Genzyme boasts of durable response to MS drug Lemtrada

A board to discuss the soon-to-be released drug Campath as a treatment for Multiple Sclerosis

Genzyme boasts of durable response to MS drug Lemtrada

Postby MSUK » Fri Mar 22, 2013 3:19 am

Genzyme boasts of durable response to MS drug Lemtrada

Looking ahead to a prospective FDA approval of its experimental multiple sclerosis drug Lemtrada and a new product launch into a competitive and fast-changing market, Genzyme executives today rolled out positive data from a one-year extension study of its pivotal Phase III trial that gives the company some boasting rights for a drug that demonstrated a durable response in most patients..... Read More - http://www.ms-uk.org/index.cfm/lemtrada
MS-UK - http://www.ms-uk.org/
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Re: Genzyme boasts of durable response to MS drug Lemtrada

Postby CureOrBust » Fri Mar 22, 2013 6:01 am

Lemtrada is the commercial name for alemtuzumab, which had also been approved as Campath to treat leukemia. That cheaper drug, though, was shelved to make way for what is expected to be a far more expensive MS therapy.
Huh? what is the cheaper drug? Isn't it simply a rename of the same drug? or is it a serious price change to boot?
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Re: Genzyme boasts of durable response to MS drug Lemtrada

Postby euphoniaa » Fri Mar 22, 2013 7:21 am

CureOrBust wrote:
Lemtrada is the commercial name for alemtuzumab, which had also been approved as Campath to treat leukemia. That cheaper drug, though, was shelved to make way for what is expected to be a far more expensive MS therapy.
Huh? what is the cheaper drug? Isn't it simply a rename of the same drug? or is it a serious price change to boot?

Cure, here's a news quote from Reuters that I posted on a Lemtrada thread in the General forum:

Sanofi draws fire over cost of MS drug Lemtrada
Wed, Oct 31 2012

Although Campath remains available free of charge to leukaemia patients, Sanofi's rare disease unit Genzyme pulled it off the market in September to prevent its unauthorised use as an MS drug. Analysts said the move would allow the company to adjust the price to match that of rival MS drugs on the market.

A full course of Campath, which in 2011 had sales of $76 million, cost around $60,000 when given three times a week for up to 12 weeks, according to Genzyme. Lemtrada, instead, is given at less than half the dose of Campath for 5 consecutive days and then again for 3 days a year later. Since the drug has yet to be approved, it remains unclear how much Sanofi will charge for it.

The drug, which works by resetting a person's immune system, has shown in late-stage trials to be an effective treatment for MS patients who have failed to respond to other therapies. It has also shown to benefit people not previously treated for the disease, suggesting it could be used as a first-line MS therapy.

But patients need regular monitoring for serious side effects that can include infections and autoimmune diseases. "It's important that the appropriate safety monitoring is in place for patients who are prescribed Lemtrada," Genzyme's head of MS, Bill Sibold, told Reuters, responding to questions about the Lancet editorial. "Until an approved risk-management program is established, we believe the use of Lemtrada should only occur in clinical trials."
Dx'd with MS & HNPP (hereditary peripheral neuropathy) 7/03 but must have had MS for 30 yrs before that. I've never taken meds for MS except 1 yr experiment on LDN. (I found diet, exercise, sleep, humor, music help me the most.)
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