Blood products and vaccines maker CSL says a treatment that it is developing to stop recurring heart attacks has the potential to transform its business.
Chief executive Paul Perreault says data collected so far on CSL 112 - a novel formulation of a beneficial cholesterol - supports its potential use in preventing recurring heart attacks and other coronary events.
CSL, which achieved a 3.4 per cent profit rise in the first half of the 2013/14 financial year, said it is moving ahead with the next phase of a global clinical trial of CSL 112 in 2014.
"That (CSL 112) has significant potential to transform our business really," Mr Perreault told reporters.
He said CSL had a long way to go in the development of CSL 112, but if clinical trials were successful, the huge market for a drug that could prevent recurrent heart attacks after a first heart attack was obvious.
"So that's a very exciting, a very significant potential product," Mr Perreault said.
CSL made a net profit of $US646 million in the six months to December 31, up from $US625 million in the same period one year ago, as solid sales growth offset costs relating to a US lawsuit.
The company expects its full year profit to be about seven per cent above the $US1.22 billion recorded in 2012/13, at current exchange rates.
Mr Perreault said the company's underlying operations remained strong, and global demand for its plasma therapies gave it the confidence to expect profit growth.
"What has also been pleasing this period is the progress we've made in expanding markets for our existing products and advancing new products for our pipeline," he said.
CSL's specialty products business had been a star performer in the first half, Mr Perreault said.
That was led by the successful rollout in the US of Kcentra, which helps restore the ability of blood to coagulate in patients undergoing warfarin therapy.
Warfarin is used by between three and four million people in the US each year to stop blood clots from forming after a stroke, heart attack, heart valve surgery, deep vein thrombosism or irregular heartbeat.
Shares in CSL were down $2.29, 3.3 per cent, at $67.57 at 1254 AEDT.