The approval of Plegridy comes as a result of the one of the largest pivotal studies of beta interferon
conducted, ADVANCE, which included more than 1,500 MS patients.
has been shown to be effective in helping people with 'relapsing remitting' MS, where victims suffer repeated bouts of the condition, often increasing in severity, which can leave them severely disabled.
Kenneth Johnson of the University of Maryland is heading a 10-center trial of 350 patients, who will give themselves subcutaneous doses of beta interferon
or placebo for two years.
Head-to-head studies such as INCOMIN have confirmed the superiority of high-dose, high-frequency beta interferon
regimens versus lower-dose, lower-frequency regimens," added Prof.
Last month, another drug was licensed to treat the disease in the UK, giving sufferers the first alternative to beta interferon
RESTRICTING the multiple sclerosis drug beta interferon
on the NHS would be cruel and unacceptable, say Coventry campaigners.
ARIA's product programs are focused in two areas: 1) the development of small-molecule drugs that block signal transduction pathways that play a critical role in diseases such as osteoporosis, allergy/asthma and immune-related diseases, and 2) the development of orally administered drugs that control the production of therapeutic proteins such as EPO, Human Growth Hormone, Alpha Interferon or Beta Interferon
Since laboratory studies had shown that beta interferon
inhibits the production of gamma interferon, it was decided to do a trial of synthetic beta interferon
The authors say that if their conclusions are right, the use of beta interferon
"would have to be recommended and actively promoted by health services".
That includes beta interferon
but sufferers also need proper rehabilitation services, physiotherapy and information about their condition.
Since alpha's side effects were now well known, it was decided to run a pilot trial with beta interferon
, to learn whether the agent was safe and at what dose it could be tolerated.
The patent covers a method of producing beta interferon
- a protein with significant therapeutic properties - in Chinese Hamster Ovary (CHO) cells using recombinant DNA technology.