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Salix, Progenics rise on FDA panel review

NEW YORK (AP) -- Shares of Salix Pharmaceuticals Inc. and Progenics Pharmaceuticals Inc. rose Tuesday after the companies said a Food and Drug Administration advisory panel will review the constipation drug Relistor.

THE SPARK: Salix wants Relistor approved for treating constipation caused by opioid pain drugs in patients with chronic pain. In 2012 the FDA declined to approve Relistor for that. Salix is appealing that decision and a favorable review from the panel could improve the drug's chances.

THE BIG PICTURE: Relistor is an injectable drug approved for use in patients with advanced illnesses who are receiving palliative care. It was first approved in the U.S. and Europe in 2010, and Salix later licensed the drug from Progenics.

The Raleigh, N.C., company said prescriptions for Relistor more than doubled in 2012. It did not disclose how much revenue it received from sales.

SHARE ACTION: Up $3.13, or 5 percent, to close at $65.42. Earlier in the session it reached an all-time high of $65.92. The shares have climbed 53.9 percent this year. Progenics shares jumped $1.14, or 31 percent, to close at $4.82.