Those attending this week’s ACTRIMS-ECTRIMS convention set to take place on the 10th of September until the 13th in Boston, can expect Swiss pharmaceutical company Novartis to present promising findings on Gilenya (fingolimod) — the company’s leading oral formulation for relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis (RRMS).
In previously completed studies and clinical trials, Gilenya has produced significant improvements in the 4 parameters used to monitor MS progression: relapses, MRI lesions, loss of brain volume, and disabilities. The company hopes their new information will contribute to one of the health sector’s aims of redefining MS treatment goals, which is to leave the patient with “no evidence of disease activity” (NEDA). NEDA is a state of no relapses, lesions, and worsening of disabilities.
Novartis will be focusing on the importance of analyzing and monitoring brain volume as a parameter for determining if an MS case has NEDA, along with their recent findings on Gilenya’s ability to allow more patients to achieve NEDA, because of a significant reduction in sustained brain volume loss over the course of the disease. At present, the drug has been successfully tested on over 100,000 patients all over the globe.
The company is scheduled to present 4 oral and 22 poster presentations on Gilenya, along with 2 poster presentations on siponimod.
“The data at ACTRIMS-ECTRIMS will reinforce the role of brain shrinkage and its association with future long-term MS disability progression,” said Vasant Narasimhan, Global Head of Development at Novartis Pharmaceuticals. “Novartis is committed to improving treatment outcomes for people with MS, and we believe that by including brain shrinkage as part of NEDA, clinicians can gain a more complete understanding of disease progression and treatment effects.”
Another leader in the pharmaceutical industry is working on a solution to multiple sclerosis as well. Earlier this Spring, Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd., sponsored the presentation of 14 abstracts on COPAXONE and laquinimod during the 66th annual American Academy of Neurology (AAN) conference in Philadelphia.