- Associated Press - Monday, November 29, 2010

WASHINGTON (AP) - Health regulators say two drugs from GlaxoSmithKline and Merck reduce the risk of prostate tumors in men, though scientists complain the companies only studied a small number of African Americans, who are at high risk for prostate cancer.

GlaxoSmithKline has asked the Food and Drug Administration to approve its drug Avodart for reducing prostate cancer, after research showed a 23 percent reduction in low-grade prostate tumors.

Merck achieved similar results with its drug Proscar and is asking the FDA to approve labeling about its drug’s benefits in reducing prostate cancer risks. Both drugs are already approved to treat enlarged prostate.

However, regulators said in an online review Monday that only a small percentage of patients studied by the companies were African Americans, who are at increased risk of the disease.

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