Recent News on Everything Arthritis Drug

June 18, 2008 by  
Filed under ARTHRITIS

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In lieu of the recent EULAR 2008 (the Annual European Congress of Rheumatology in Paris, France), updates are abound regarding the developments of arthritis drugs, either of those already existing in the market but most especially of those that are still under clinical trials.

1. CEL-SCI Announces Discovery of Novel Compound for the Treatment of Rheumatoid Arthritis

CEL-SCI Corporation today announced the discovery of a novel peptide for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis. This peptide, called CEL-2000, was tested in a well established animal model of rheumatoid arthritis and was compared to Enbrel(R), a leading treatment for people with rheumatoid arthritis.

2. Biotie’s VAP-1 antibody program to proceed to clinical studies in rheumatoid arthritis and psoriasis patients

Top-line data from the first-in-man study with Biotie’s fully humanVAP-1 monoclonal antibody BTT-1023 have become available. The studywas conducted in a clinical pharmacology unit in the United Kingdomand investigated the safety, tolerability and pharmacokineticcharacteristics of single intravenous doses of BTT-1023 in healthyvolunteer subjects.A total of 35 subjects, of whom 29 received BTT-1023, were enrolledinto the placebo-controlled study. BTT-1023 was generally welltolerated and no serious adverse events were reported in the study.

3. J&J, Schering arthritis drug effective in trials

An experimental treatment for rheumatoid arthritis being developed by Johnson & Johnson and Schering-Plough Corp appeared to be effective and very safe in three late-stage trials, the companies said on Tuesday.

The once-monthly injectable drug, called golimumab, is a newcomer in a family of arthritis medicines that work by blocking an inflammation-causing protein called tumor necrosis factor (TNF).

4. Cimzia® Is The First Anti-TNF Shown To Inhibit Progression Of Joint Damage As Early As 16 Weeks In Rheumatoid Arthritis

UCB has announced new data showing that Cimzia® (certolizumab pegol), the only PEGylated, Fc-Free anti-TNF (Tumor Necrosis Factor), combined with methotrexate (MTX), significantly inhibits progression of joint damage in patients with active rheumatoid arthritis (RA) as early as 16 weeks after the start of treatment.

Presented at the European League Against Rheumatism (EULAR) meeting in Paris, these data are the first to show such rapid inhibition of progression of structural damage in patients receiving an anti-TNF.

5. In Japan, HUMIRA(R) Subcutaneous Injection 40mg Syringe 0.8mL Now Available for the Treatment of Rheumatoid Arthritis

Abbott Japan Co., Ltd. (Pharmaceutical Products Group in Tokyo, President: Glenn S. Warner) and Eisai Co., Ltd. (Headquarters in Tokyo, President and CEO: Haruo Naito) announced that HUMIRA(R) subcutaneous injection 40mg Syringe 0.8mL (referred to as HUMIRA hereinafter) will be available for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis from June 18, 2008.

HUMIRA received approval for manufacturing and distribution in Japan on April 16, 2008, and was listed in the National Health Insurance drug price list on June 13, 2008. After its launch, Abbott and Eisai will take a one-brand, one-channel and two-promotion scheme to ensure provision of information on proper use of HUMIRA. Both Abbott and Eisai will provide specialist medical representatives (MRs), and Abbott will cooperate with Eisai’s hospital MRs.

6. Abbott says arthritis drug works up to 7 years

Abbott Laboratories said Friday that long-term data showed its drug Humira, in combination with a common treatment used to treat a type of arthritis pain, led to remission of the disease for up to seven years.

The studies involved enrolled 1,469 patients with long-standing rheumatoid arthritis who took Humira with methotrexate every other week continuously, for at least 30 days and up to seven years. Abbott said that after six months of therapy, patients’ symptoms improved, with additional improvements seen after two or more years.

7. New drug for rheumatoid arthritis

A new “smart” drug could save thousands of rheumatoid arthritis patients from years of worsening pain and disability, research has shown.

Tocilizumab is being hailed as a major breakthrough in combating the crippling auto-immune disease which attacks the joints.

8. Tocilizumab Monotherapy Tops Methotrexate Monotherapy for Patients With Rheumatoid Arthritis: Presented at EULAR

Tocilizumab monotherapy is superior to methotrexate monotherapy in patients with active rheumatoid arthritis (RA) who have not failed earlier treatment with methotrexate or biologics, according to phase 3 results released on June 13 at EULAR 2008, the Annual Congress of the European League Against Rheumatism.

Tocilizumab is an anti-interleukin (IL)-6 receptor antibody that inhibits IL-6 signalling. IL-6 has been implicated in the pathogenesis of RA and is thought to play a role in synovial inflammation and in the damage to periarticular bone and cartilage.

9. Roche’s Actemra helps in hard-to-treat arthritis

Thirty percent of rheumatoid arthritis patients who failed to respond adequately to anti-TNF therapy achieved remission from their disease when given Roche’s new drug Actemra, research showed on Friday.

After 24 weeks of treatment, 30.1 percent of patients receiving Actemra plus the older drug methotrexate achieved DAS28 — a standard measure of disease remission — compared with only 1.6 percent in the placebo group, the Swiss group said.

Okay, this all for now. Notice that all the above drugs in the pipeline are all specific for rheumatoid arthritis (RA) — an autoimmune, inflammatory, degenerative joint disease.

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NOTE: The contents in this blog are for informational purposes only, and should not be construed as medical advice, diagnosis, treatment or a substitute for professional care. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health professional before making changes to any existing treatment or program. Some of the information presented in this blog may already be out of date.

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