Asthma Drug Found to Slow Multiple Sclerosis Progressionadmin
It’s no longer shocking to hear that medications initially designed to treat one symptom have the unintended benefit of being able to treat another. From viagra, to aspirin, to the flu vaccine, trials are uncovering a myriad of unexpected perks. Most recently, a phase two clinical trial has demonstrated that an anti-inflammatory drug typically used to treat asthma and stroke patients can slow the damage of multiple sclerosis (MS) by almost 50%.
According to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, MS “is an unpredictable, often disabling disease of the central nervous system that disrupts the flow of information within the brain, and between the brain and body,” and there are very few medications that are effective at slowing the disease. This trial, according to IFLScience.com, included 255 MS patients between the ages of 21 and 65 from across the United States. 129 were given ibudilast and 126 were given a placebo. After two years, researchers found that brain neuron loss, measured by total brain shrinkage, was 48% less in those who had taken the oral medication. Principal investigator Dr. Robert Fox said that “(t)hese findings are significant for patients with progressive MS.”
Read the complete results of this trial in The New England Journal of Medicine.