Have been really busy, and recently read the post about the leukemia treatment being so far, successful with trials for treating ms, can anyone fill me in on this, of is it just another trial that has been botched..................
If the trial 3 is successful does the meds then go on the marked to those with ms to have, or does it take a lot longer than that???????????????????????????
At least for use in the US it would still be a couple years away from being approved for MS use, but the drug is already approved here by the FDA and could possibly be prescribed sooner for off label use. If you google MS treatment you will find lots of information about this exciting news. Note of caution - the recommendation is for people very early stages of MS and not for people who have had it for a while if I'm remembering correctly. -Lulu
they're not yet defining how early is early ... here's one article on this news that might help... http://www.voanews.com/english/2008-10-23-voa27.cfm
British Researchers Make Major Multiple Sclerosis Breakthrough
By Tom Rivers
23 October 2008
British scientists have found that a drug used to fight leukemia appears to stop multiple sclerosis in its early stages and restore lost function to patients. Campath is still in the clinical trial phase. Although it carries a risk of potentially serious side effects, it is being called by some the most promising and most significant MS treatment yet discovered. For VOA, Tom Rivers reports from London.
The three-year study conducted by Cambridge University researchers found for the first time a treatment that showed long-term multiple sclerosis disability improvement.
It is estimated that at least 2.5 million people around the world have the neurological disease. Multiple sclerosis causes the body's immune system to mistakenly attack and damage the insulation that protects nerve fibers.
In this study, more than 300 patients received an annual dose of the drug alemtuzumab, which was created at Cambridge 30 years ago to kill off cancerous immune system cells in leukemia patients.
The participants in this MS study were in the early diagnosis stage of the disease and all had experienced various so-called episodes of MS such as blurred vision and numbness; things that typically can last weeks or months.
At the end of the trial period, it was found that the drug cut the number of attacks patients experienced by 74 percent compared to the currently most common conventional therapy.
Team leader Dr. Alastair Compston says those numbers are dramatic and encouraging.
"Within a few months of treatment, the disease has settled down and very few of the patients have had any more attacks and very few of them have had any extra disability," he said. "In fact, many of them have even started to get better."
Compton's associate, Dr. Adasdair Coles says the drug changes lives.
"We give them this drug and three years later, they are more able to do their work. They are more able to look after their family," Dr. Coles said. "They are more able to play the sports that they enjoyed. And that is what this drug alemtuzumab has given to them."
At Britain's MS Society, Dr. Lee Dunster agrees. He says the new treatment looks very promising.
"To have a drug that for the first time reduces relapses, reduces the risk of disability progression and possibly reverses some of the disability will be the single most important breakthrough in the treatment of early relapsing-remitting MS that we have seen to date," he said.
A minority of those in the study experienced side effects such as over-active or under-active thyroid gland function, but it is pointed out that that can easily be treated. More clinical trials are under way and if all goes well, the treatment could be available on the market in as little as four years.
FWIW, my wife just had an appointment with her MS specialist this past Monday and I had an opportunity to ask the doc about the new application for this drug. Unfortunately, he was not too optimistic about it...actually it seemed that it was not even a possible solution in the near term(3-5yr) future. He said that the thyroid condition that can be developed is somewhat serious, but a secondary concern to the eight people that developed a platelet disorder and died. Im not sure if the deceased individuals are connected or not with the study mentioned in the above post.
He did however say that, and was excited about, within a 2-3yr time period there are literally 100 new treatment drugs that have the potential to hit the market.
The doc said that the immune system is so complicated that no one can get a full understanding on how to create a drug that can get rid of the disease. Everytime a drug or solution gets close, and this apparently has happened several times in history, the immune system changes and finds a way around the drug.
Lastly, fwiw this doc is very well respected and is involved with drug development. I respect his opinion and would not have posted any of this if I thought the guy was a goof.
Not that I'm downplaying the risks or side effects associated with Campath, but I've seen some inaccuracies posted in regard to the studies. Nine people developed the platelet disorder ITP, but only one died. If caught early, ITP is treatable, and the patient that died had warning signs (easy bruising), and either didn't recognize them or didn't catch them. The others that developed ITP were successfully treated, and it was put into remission. Since the one death, the study protocol calls for monthly blood monitoring, so they are being very careful.
The thyroid condition was developed by some patient in the early trials. Even worst case, Grave's disease is treatable with a daily pill.
My apologies to all...it appears that I may have mispoke and the accuracy of my post is not precise. Perhaps it would be best is the moderators could delete my posting.
I would be certain that it is my restating of the facts that are inaccurate not the information that I was told by the doc. I should have never tried to restate to a public forum something I dont fully understand.
No need to apologize. I didn't mean for my post to come off as sounding critical of you - sorry if it did. And there is no reason to delete your post. Personally, I found the opinions of your wife's doctor interesting.
I had seen that info about the number of deaths posted on another website. That's the only reason I pointed it out. And that number could refer to the number of deaths overall, including trials using Campath to treat leukemia. (The dosing is different for leukemia, though).
Again, sorry if my response came across as being critical.
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