A pharmaceutical company focused on medications for weight loss is relaunching its drug Contrave, which includes the opioid antagonist naltrexone, with a new sales force. Contrave, which received Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval in 2014, combines the drugs naltrexone and bupropion.
San Diego-based Orexigen Therapeutics has completed its acquisition of the U.S. rights to Contrave, which is indicated for chronic weight management (in conjunction with dietary modifications and exercise) in overweight or obese individuals with a weight-related chronic medical condition. Naltrexone, which is approved for use in alcohol and opioid dependence, is believed to act on the hypothalamus, which regulates appetite.
According to a news release from the pharmaceutical company, Contrave had become the leading branded anti-obesity drug by June 2015, eight months after its initial launch.