Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Teva earnings driven once again by strong Copaxone sales

Teva earnings driven once again by strong Copaxone sales

Israel's Teva Pharmaceutical Industries has posted another strong set of financials for the second quarter, with net income rising 5% to $539 million, or $0.65 per share (+3%)
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Atlantic man brings Lincoln to life
Daily Nonpareil - Council Bluffs,IA,USA
Williams and his wife, Jeanie, also cope with her multiple sclerosis. She is a registered nurse, and together the couple formed another part-time business ...
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"Debemos ser cautos con las células madre"
Gaceta Médica - Madrid,Spain
Tenemos algunos realmente novedosos, y posiblemente más efectivos que el interferón beta, como los nuevos antimicóticos, o el fingolimod, ...
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Montreal08 coming soon!

Montréal08 – Living with MS: Global Perspectives on Current Issues, Tuesday 16 September 2008.

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Successful ICF Core Sets for MS conference in Switzerland

The International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF) Core Sets for MS Consensus Conference took place from 2-4 May, 2008 at the Valens Rehabilitation Centre.

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Research News
Intravenous immunoglobulin in relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis: a dose-finding trial

In this multicentre randomised controlled trial the authors studied the effect of intravenous immunoglobulin in people with relapsing remitting MS. Unfortunately it was not of benefit.

authors: Fazekas F, Lublin FD, Li D, Freedman MS, Hartung HP, Rieckmann P, Sørensen PS, Maas-Enriquez M, Sommerauer B, Hanna K; PRIVIG Study Group; UBC MS/MRI Research Group.

source: Neurology. 2008 Jul 22;71(4):265-71.

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A Taqman assay for high-throughput genotyping of the multiple sclerosis-associated HLA-DRB1*1501 allele

The pathology of MS is complex and genes play a role. The authors have developed a new technique to identify those genes that might contribute to risk.

authors: Goris A, Walton A, Ban M, Dubois B, Compston A, Sawcer S.

source: Tissue Antigens. 2008 Jul 15.

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Natural history of multiple sclerosis in a population-based cohort

This study looked to see which factors were important in predicting outcome in MS. They found that having the relapsing remitting form, complete recovery from the first relapse, and younger age of onset predicted better clinical outcome.

authors: Debouverie M, Pittion-Vouyovitch S, Louis S, Guillemin F; for the LORSEP Group.

source: Eur J Neurol. 2008 Jul 15.

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Polyspecific, antiviral immune response distinguishes multiple sclerosis and neuromyelitis optica

This study compared the differences in exposure to different viruses in people with MS and a related but more severe condition called neuromyelitis optica. They found different antibody responses and concluded that this offered further evidence that the conditions are distinct.

authors: Jarius S, Franciotta D, Bergamaschi R, Rauer S, Wandinger K, Petereit H, Maurer M, Tumani H, Vincent A, Eichhorn P, Brigitte W, Wick M, Voltz R.

source: J Neurol Neurosurg Psychiatry. 2008 Jul 17.

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Smoking is a risk factor for early conversion to clinically definite multiple sclerosis

In this study the authors looked at people who had one attack suggestive of MS. They found that having a second attack was more common in people who smoked. The importance of the study is that smoking is a modifiable risk factor.

authors: Di Pauli F, Reindl M, Ehling R, Schautzer F, Gneiss C, Lutterotti A, O'Reilly EJ, Munger KL, Deisenhammer F, Ascherio A, Berger T.

source: Mult Scler. 2008 Jul 16.

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Prevalence of sleep problems in individuals with multiple sclerosis

In this study the authors investigated the presence of sleep disorders among people with MS, finding them to be more frequent than in the general population.

authors: Bamer AM, Johnson KL, Amtmann D, Kraft GH

source: Mult Scler. 2008 Jul 16.

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Smoking worsens the prognosis in multiple sclerosis

In this second paper on smoking and MS the authors found links with a worse clinical course.

authors: Sundström P, Nyström L.

source: Mult Scler. 2008 Jul 16. [Epub ahead of print]

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Magnetic resonance imaging measures of brain and spinal cord atrophy correlate with clinical impairment in secondary progressive multiple sclerosis

This paper found that loss of brain and cord tissue in people with secondary progressive MS is associated with a more severe clinical course. They suggested that MRI measures of atrophy may therefore be useful in future clinical trials.

authors: Furby J, Hayton T, Anderson V, Altmann D, Brenner R, Chataway J, Hughes RA, Smith KJ, Miller DH, Kapoor R.

source: Mult Scler. 2008 Jul 16.

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MS News

Summaries of MS news from websites around the world.

New EU air travel regulations for people with disabilities

source: European Platform of MS

The European Disability Forum (EDF) has successfully campaigned to improve the rights of air passengers with disabilities.

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Statins could cut the risk of developing dementia – study
People at high risk for dementia who took cholesterol-lowering statins are half as likely to develop dementia, according to a new study





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Diagnosis and Types of MS
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Dr. Freedman

Professor of medicine in the field of neurology at the University of Ottawa, ON
View BIO


Q :
Since it is not always easy to diagnose MS, how are people recruited for studies that are looking at treatment of Clinically Isolated Syndrome?

A :
Clinically isolated syndrome refers to one of the classical presentations of the “first attack” of MS. By definition, one needs to have events that involve different parts of the central nervous system involved at different times to meet the criteria for diagnosis. Patients who are having their first attack would not meet this definition. Many such patients though will have MRI studies that strongly point to MS as a possibility and such patients will most likely go on to have other attacks within a few years. The only way these patients are recruited to studies is that they have had all other causes for their neurological symptoms and signs ruled out. If their brain MRIs then show MS-type lesions they would be recruited to the studies.
7/29/2008 8:44:09 AM
More answers from Dr. Mark Freedman
More answers in the category: Diagnosis and Types of MS

DISCLAIMER: Please be aware that this information does not necessarily represent the opinion of the MS Society of Canada, and is not intended as medical advice. For specific advice and opinion, always consult a physician.
© 2008 Multiple Sclerosis Society of Canada | www.mssociety.ca



Patient groups play lead role in research programs
By John Carroll

Jay Tenenbaum wanted to do much more than help raise money for cancer research after his diagnosis for melanoma. He believes groups of patients like himself can advance new therapeutics that can save their lives. The multimillionaire created CollabRx with $2 million of his own money and is raising $3 million more. And Tenenbaum is hoping to create a group of "virtual" biotechs that can advance new research into life-saving therapies.

Patient-supported research efforts like his are having a real impact on the drug discovery arena, the Wall Street Journal reports. The Myelin Repair Foundation has provided $13 million to fund a team of researchers who will unveil their top two prospects to drug developers later this year. And the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation has supplied $75 million to advance a drug that has shown promise in clinical trials.

- read the article from the Wall Street Journal

Related Article:
PTC gets $25M drug development award
Foundation invests millions to find MS drug leads

Read more about: patient groups, Jay Tenenbaum



CROs play growing role in early-stage research
By John Carroll

Contract research organizations are playing a growing role helping small biotech companies develop early-stage therapeutics, according to a new report from Turner Investment Partners. Over the past five years the global CRO industry has seen its revenue share from biotech companies grow from 21 percent to 30 percent. And regulators have shown a preference for the broad patient groups that international CROs can offer.

On a darker note, the TIP report also underscores that a falling rate of new drug approvals at a time of soaring costs is causing pharma companies to lose interest in their R&D operations. And that, they say, is a disaster in the making.

"Pharma companies must innovate to survive" says the report, "which means that while they are striving to control costs, they also need to keep spending on research and development to create profitable, proprietary new drugs and replenish the pipeline."

- read the report from In-PharmaTechnologist

Related Articles:
CRO worries grow as research business booms
CRO market hits $14B
New companies flooding CMO market

Read more about: R&D spending, early-stage research, CRO




Stem cell scientist predicts health revolution

By John Carroll

Dr. Joshua Hare, who heads the new stem cell institute at the University of Miami, says that stem cells could have as big an impact on human health as antibiotics had in the 20th century. "Diseases like heart attacks, strokes, kidney failure, liver failure--we will be able to transition them into things you live with," says the researcher.

One of Hare's projects involved harvesting adult stem, multiplying them and then injecting them into a damaged heart, working on the theory that they would develop into new heart tissue that could heal the damage. And he now has the FDA's OK to experiment with new ways to introduce stem cells.

- read the story from the Miami Herald

ALSO: A group of scientists in Australia are studying ways to use stem cells to treat chronic angina in patients who have failed other remedies. Report

Related Articles:
In breakthrough, scientists reprogram skin cells into ESCs
Stem cell revolutionaries take on big challenges
More jaw-dropping scientific advances lay ahead
In research, stem cells make another breakthrough

Read more about: Stem Cells, Dr. Joshua Hare




Fish-Heavy Diet May Slow Hardening of Arteries 
PITTSBURGH -- A diet loaded with omega-3 fatty acids from fish may prevent atherosclerosis over a lifetime, researchers found. full story



FDA Warns of Toxic Tomalley in Maine Lobsters 
ROCKVILLE, Md. -- The FDA warned today against eating the soft, green substance found in the body cavity of Maine lobsters, called tomalley, which is considered a delicacy by some. But the meat of the claw and tail were not part of the caution. full story




Alzheimer’s Linked to Thyroid-Related Hormone 
BOSTON -- Abnormal levels of the hormone thyrotropin, which controls thyroid function, may be associated with an increased risk of Alzheimer’s disease in women, researchers found. full story



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