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Test predicts good MS prognosis

12.03.2013 - Elan and Biogen Idec have presented a new test at AAN meeting which identifies JCV infected MS patients with good prognosis.

Whilst Tysabri (natalizumab) is the most effective treatment for relapsing multiple sclerosis, it has also its downsides: the antibody drug increases the risk of a rare but potentially fatal brain infection called progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy (PML). A study presented at the American Academy of Neurology's 65th Annual Meeting in San Diego suggests that early detection of PML may help improve survival and disability levels of MS patients.  

In the study, which was conducted by Irish Elan and Biogen Idec, 319 MS patients were treated with natalizumab and diagnosed with PML. The study compared people who had symptoms of PML at the time of diagnosis to people who had no symptoms of the infection, but who were diagnosed with the disease by brain scans and tests in the spinal fluid for the JC virus. The level of disability for the people in the study was assessed before the PML diagnosis, at the time of diagnosis, and again six months and one year after the diagnosis.  

A total of 21 people had no PML symptoms at the time of their diagnosis, while 298 people did. According to preliminary findings, people without symptoms at diagnosis showed improved survival and less disability than those who had developed symptoms. As of January 1, 2013, all of the 21 people (100%) with no symptoms at the time of PML diagnosis were alive, compared to 77% of the people with symptoms at the time of diagnosis. "These results suggest that the consequences of PML infection can be mitigated by early detection of the disease," said lead investigator Dong-Si.  

In mid-February, US biotech Biogen Idec had bagged full rights to Elan's Multiple Sclerosis blockbuster Tysabri in a US$3.25bn deal. Shortly after the agreement, US investor Royalty Pharma made a take-over bid but the Irish drugmaker is fighting off a possible take-over.

© eurobiotechnews.eu/tg

http://www.european-biotechnology-news.com/news/news/2013-01/test-finds-people-with-good-ms-prognosis.html

Open InnovationFrance

03.05.2016 Ipsen is strengthening its ties to long-time development partner Oncodesign, a Dijon-based cancer treatment biotech. The French pharma is handing over the pre-clinical pharmacology for its oncology research programmes to Oncodesign.

FinancingSwitzerlandEU

29.04.2016 Swiss bank Group UBS has raised US$471m (€412m) for the UBS Oncology Impact Fund, which was set up to invest in early-stage cancer treatments. The money raised by the fund, nearly half of which comes from investors in Asia, is the largest amount ever raised for such a cancer investment fund.

Industry reportGermany

27.04.2016 More revenue, more jobs, more financing, more R&D expenditure – all signs point towards sustainable growth in the German biotech sector. These are the results of the most recent company survey 2016, published by biotechnologie.de. The report was once again conducted alongside the biotech standards defined by the organisation for economic cooperation and development (OECD).

Clinical ResearchFrancePortugal

21.04.2016 An expert panel’s final report on the fatal drug trial earlier this year in France states that the death of one of the participants was most likely caused by the drug’s toxicity and not by any violation of the rules.

Immuno-oncologyNetherlandsBelgium

21.04.2016 For up to US$685m (€606m), Dutch ArgenX has outlicensed its human antibody programme ARGX-115 to AbbVie. The pre-clinical immuno-oncology candidate targets a protein believed to contribute to immunosuppressive effects of T-cells.

RegulatorySwitzerlandEU

20.04.2016 The US government is forking out up to US$100m to get Basilea Pharmaceutica’s broad-spectrum antibiotic ceftobiprole on the US market. In the EU, ceftobiprole is already available.

Immuno-oncologyUK

19.04.2016 British drug developer Heptares Therapeutics and mAb maker Kymab Ltd have partnered up in yet another immuno-oncology collaboration. The companies plan to discover antibody meds targeting a superfamily of receptors.

FinancingSwitzerlandFranceEUGermanyDenmark

15.04.2016 Not every company is put off by the current stock market climate. Swiss biopharma company GeNeuro has gone public at Euronext Paris, raising €33m in the process. Others, meanwhile, have to find different ways to raise money.

Event ReviewSwitzerlandBelgiumEU

13.04.2016 Despite political disturbances, 2015 was a good year for the biotech scene in Switzerland. Net sales increased by 5.1% to CHF5,133m and 400 additional people found jobs in the sector. As usual, the new numbers were presented at the annual Swiss Biotech Day – which set new records as well.

FinancingGermanyNetherlandsEU

12.04.2016 German-Dutch life science investment specialist Forbion Capital Partners has raised more than €180m for its venture capital fund Forbion Capital Fund III. Once more the money will primarily go to European start-ups.

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