Presentation

A board to discuss the newly-released drug Tysabri, (formerly known as Antegren) as a treatment for Multiple Sclerosis

Presentation

Postby bromley » Tue May 16, 2006 9:24 am

One for you HarryZ - UK MS Society presentation on Tysabri

Ian

http://www.mssociety.org.uk/document.rm?id=1405
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Re: Presentation

Postby HarryZ » Wed May 17, 2006 10:59 am

Ian,

Why do I have a feeling that Elan may be sponsoring this presentation :)

Harry
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Postby bromley » Thu May 18, 2006 9:42 am

Harry,

I doubt they are. Professor Miller is employed by the Institute of Neurology in London and gave his presentation at the UK MS Society's Life Conference. He oversees the MRI project which is funded by the UK MS Society, part of which is to look at the effectiveness of drugs. I think his presentation flags up the risks associated with Tysabri and the pros and cons. I didn't read it as a sales pitch.

The general sense that I get from talking to neuros specialising in MS research is that Tysabri is more effective than the current DMDs in terms of reducing the number of relapses, but that the risks have yet to be properly defined.

If I were Biogen or Elan my worry would be about the oral MS drugs such as FTY720 which appear to show efficacy in terms of reducing relapses (whatever that means), and may be on the market in 2-3 years time. One of the attractions of Tysabri, in addition to being more effective at reducing relapses, is the monthy infusion (as opposed to daily, every other day, weekly injections). But this would still mean getting to the hospital / clinic. Oral drugs offering similar efficacy would easily win. So Biogen and Elan are unlikely to see long-term revenue streams from Tysabri, as the manufacturers of the DMDs have. I imagine that's why they have bought up promising treatments such as Rituxan and Daclizumab.



Ian
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Postby HarryZ » Thu May 18, 2006 11:11 am

Hi Ian,

The general sense that I get from talking to neuros specialising in MS research is that Tysabri is more effective than the current DMDs in terms of reducing the number of relapses, but that the risks have yet to be properly defined.


I think you are very right on this. The current "big 4" of MS medications, when you look at the difficulty of administering them and the meager results, are not all that good . Yet, the drug companies who make them have been preaching for years on how wonderful they are MS patients!
I can remember when Tysabri was first available for general use. Several neuros made the comment that they were very glad to finally have something else that was better than the "not so good" CRABs. Then Tysabri got pulled and they had to put their patients back on those "not so good" drugs!


If I were Biogen or Elan my worry would be about the oral MS drugs such as FTY720 which appear to show efficacy in terms of reducing relapses (whatever that means), and may be on the market in 2-3 years time. One of the attractions of Tysabri, in addition to being more effective at reducing relapses, is the monthy infusion (as opposed to daily, every other day, weekly injections). But this would still mean getting to the hospital / clinic. Oral drugs offering similar efficacy would easily win. So Biogen and Elan are unlikely to see long-term revenue streams from Tysabri, as the manufacturers of the DMDs have. I imagine that's why they have bought up promising treatments such as Rituxan and Daclizumab.


Bring out a pill that gives anywhere near the results of the CRABs and you can kiss the CRABs good-bye. And the companies that make these drugs are very aware of that. Then again, they have made so much money on the CRABs that they will easily make the adjustment.

Take care.

Harry
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