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Multiple Sclerosis - Laquinimod Phase IIb Trial Confirms Efficacy

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  • Multiple Sclerosis - Laquinimod Phase IIb Trial Confirms Efficacy

    September 05, 2006
    Laquinimod Phase IIb Trial Confirms Efficacy and Favorable Safety Profile and Shows Significant Reduction in the Rate of Inflammatory Disease Activity

    JERUSALEM & LUND, Sweden--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Sept. 5, 2006-- The once-daily novel oral agent for relapsing remitting multiple sclerosis (MS) patients, met its primary end-point.

    Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd (Nasdaq: TEVA) and Active Biotech AB (ACTI.ST) today announced that a Phase IIb study designed to evaluate the safety and efficacy of laquinimod, a once-daily novel oral agent, in relapsing remitting multiple sclerosis (MS) patients, met its primary end-point.

    Laquinimod treatment significantly reduced the rate of inflammatory disease activity, as measured by the cumulative number of Gadolinium enhancing lesions on brain MRI scans after 36 weeks of treatment. Laquinimod treatment also demonstrated a considerable reduction in the number of clinical relapses compared to placebo. This Phase IIb multi-center, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study enrolled approximately 300 patients in 8 European countries and in Israel.

    The evaluation of the safety and side-effect data confirmed the favourable safety profile that was seen in earlier phase II clinical trials.

    The majority of the patients who participated in the study are currently continuing treatment with laquinimod in an ongoing, blinded extension study.

    "The study results with once daily oral laquinimod are very encouraging and further demonstrate our ongoing commitment to developing new classes of therapies for MS, including oral therapies, to treat the disease, as well as to improve the patients' quality of life", said Israel Makov, President and CEO of Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd..

    "As of today, nearly 400 patients have received laquinimod in various clinical trials over the last years. The data from the completed studies together with preclinical documentation, confirm laquinimod's efficacy and favorable safety profile in MS patients," said Sven Andreasson, President and CEO of Active Biotech AB.

    The positive result of the clinical trial triggers a milestone payment to Active Biotech.

    Further details about the study will be given at Teva's Innovative R&D Day in New York City on September 26th, 2006. A complete presentation of the Phase IIb data will be given at upcoming relevant scientific meetings.

    Teva is discussing laquinimod's development plan with regulatory authorities in order to accelerate the clinical program into Phase III.

    About Laquinimod

    Laquinimod is a novel once-daily, orally administered immunomodulatory compound developed as a disease modifying treatment for multiple sclerosis (MS). Active Biotech developed laquinimod and licensed it to Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. in June 2004.

    About MS

    Multiple Sclerosis (MS) is the leading cause of neurological disability in young adults. It is estimated that 400,000 people in the United States are affected by this disease, and that over one million people are affected worldwide. MS is a progressive, demyelinating disease of the central nervous system affecting the brain, spinal cord and optic nerves.

    Patients with MS may experience physical symptoms and/or cognitive impairments, including weakness, fatigue, ataxia, physical dysfunction, bladder and bowel problems, sensory effects, and visual impairment. MS also has a significant impact on the sufferers' social functioning and overall quality of life.

    About Active Biotech

    Active Biotech AB is a biotechnology company focusing on research and development of pharmaceuticals. Active Biotech has a strong R&D portfolio with pipeline products focused on autoimmune/inflammatory diseases and cancer. Most advanced projects are Laquinimod, an orally administered small molecule with unique immunomodulatory properties for the treatment of multiple sclerosis, as well as ANYARA for use in cancer immunotherapy with the primary indications renal cell cancer and non-small cell lung cancer. Further key projects in clinical development comprise the three orally administered compounds TASQ for prostate cancer 57-57 for SLE and RhuDex(R) for RA.

    About Teva

    Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd., headquartered in Israel, is among the top 20 pharmaceutical companies in the world and is the leading generic pharmaceutical company. The company develops, manufactures and markets generic and innovative human pharmaceuticals and active pharmaceutical ingredients, as well as animal health pharmaceutical products. Over 80% of Teva's sales are in North America and Europe. Teva's innovative R&D focuses on developing novel drugs for diseases of the central nervous system.

  • #2
    So a treatment for sclerosis is on the horizon. This gives many a fighting chance. Some will even be able to test the final drug and hopefully will get better.