Data from the largest study ever of pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) shows the oral medication selexipag (Uptravi, Actelion Pharma) led to a 40% reduction in hospitalizations and worsening symptoms among patients with pulmonary hypertension, according to the research published in the New England Journal of Medicine.

On December 22, 2015, the FDA approved selexipag (Uptravi) to treat PAH.

The drug targets a well-known disease pathway that opens blood vessels to the lungs and improves heart function and is easier to use than [PAH] treatments delivered with infusions or injections.

“For more than two decades we’ve targeted the prostacyclin pathway to induce vasodilation in these blood vessels in the lung,” says senior study author Vallerie McLaughlin, MD, director of the University of Michigan Pulmonary Hypertension Program.