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Viking Therapeutics obesity drug hits target in key study, raising hopes for a competitor to existing medicines

An obesity medication from Viking Therapeutics succeeded in a Phase 2 clinical study, the company said Tuesday, helping patients lose up to nearly 15% of their weight over about three months and further fueling the competition in the exploding obesity drug market. 

Shares of the San Diego-based company doubled in premarket trading. 

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The trial tested four different weekly injectable doses of the Viking drug, called VK2735, over 13 weeks, with patients seeing a dose-dependent amount of weight loss over the period. Those on the highest dose — 15 milligrams — lost 14.7% of weight. 

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