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An experimental drug from Merck and Bayer cut hospitalizations for heart failure by 10% in a study published in the New England Journal of Medicine and presented virtually by the American College of Cardiology on Sunday.

“I think we need to sit back and acknowledge that we have another win in the treatment of heart failure,” Clyde Yancy, chief of cardiology at Northwestern’s Feinberg School of Medicine, said on the ACC’s webcast, speaking about the drug, vericiguat.


The news represents a victory against the disease that is both lethal and costly. About 6.5 million Americans have heart failure, in which the organ becomes too weak to pump enough blood to the body. It kills 80,000 in the U.S. each year. It is also an area where, until recently, experimental treatments were more likely to fail than succeed.

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