U.S. Markets open in 8 hrs 42 mins

Merck wins U.S. FDA approval for expanded use of antibiotic

June 3 (Reuters) - The U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Monday approved expanded use of Merck & Co Inc's antibiotic to treat hospital-acquired pneumonia in patients 18 years and older.

The approval is based on late-stage trial results of the treatment, Zerbaxa, which showed that Merck's drug was as effective as the antibiotic meropenem.

Hospital-acquired pneumonia occurs in patients at least two-three days after being admitted or in those who are on mechanical breathing machines and have life-threatening lung infections with high mortality rates. (Reporting by Saumya Sibi Joseph and Manojna Maddipatla in Bengaluru; Editing by Maju Samuel)