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Trials of a potential new drug to treat multiple sclerosis have proved successful after it was shown to significantly cut relapses in patients who took a once-daily oral treatment.
Sanofi-Aventis said it is pleased with the results from the phase III trials of its candidate drug teriflunomide.
In tests it was found that two different doses of the drug cut the annualised relapse rate of the chronic disease by 31% against placebo and patients tolerated both doses well.
The study involved 1,088 patients who were either on 7 mg or 14 mg doses of teriflunomide or on a placebo.
The so-called TEMSO trial also revealed that the risk of progression in disability fell 30% in patients who were given 14 mg of teriflunomide and was down 24% for those on half the dose.
Some minor side-effect of the drug were diarrhoea and nausea in patients on the higher dose as well as alanine transferase increases â€“ related to liver function â€“ that were mainly mild.
Sanofi’s head of research Marc Cluzel said: “We are very pleased with the successful results of the TEMSO study which are an important step forward in multiple sclerosis clinical research.”
Copyright Press Association 2010