The Spanish Agency for Medicines and Health Products (AEMPS) has approved the first clinical trial of a specific antigen therapy based on dendritic cells adapted for patients with MS and NMO, (also called Devic's disease).
This research, which will be led by Pablo Villoslada and Daniel Benitez from the Clinic Hospital of Barcelona, is driven by the Grupo de Afectados de Esclerosis Múltiple (GAEM), and has the support of the Obra Social La Caixa.
The clinical trial will be conducted July through December 2015 in 12 patients with multiple sclerosis. Subsequently trials will take place in Europe, and waiting in mid-2018 to get to the clinic if the results are as expected.
This technique, which has already been tested successfully in animals, comes from previous experience of dendritic cell therapy, which stands out for its good tolerance and promising results in Crohn's disease.
The antigen-specific dendritic cell therapy has the goal of modulate defenses of the patients very selectively to curb inflammation that causes both diseases without altering other defenses. Isolating and growing in the laboratory a type of leukocytes, dendritic cells, to confront portions of myelin proteins and astrocytes against which the immune system reacts pathologically.
The maturation of these cells leads to suppress the inflammatory response, rather than promote it. And it does so only for these targets, brain proteins. Thus, the inflammatory response of each patient slows against brain proteins, without affecting other immune system responses required to defend against common infections or cancer. When using patient's own cells and different portions of brain proteins, you may get a more effective and personalized treatment without side effects.