Research

Sepsis drug fails to help in clinical trial

A major clinical problem, largely unknown to patients

People are said to die of cancer or other diseases, but the actual agent of death is often septic shock. There is no effective medicine, although treatment procedures have improved. Image of E.coli bacteria: National Institutes of Health

Sepsis kills hundreds of thousands of Americans and more people around the world annually. While doctors have made progress, they don’t yet have a medicine specific to the condition. Many had hoped a drug called Eritoran would be that remedy, but phase 3 clinical trial results newly published in the Journal of the American Medical Association show it was no better than a placebo.