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Sanofi posts positive data for MS drug Aubagio

Phase III study shows drug slows brain volume loss

Sanofi's Aubagio has significantly slowed brain volume loss over two years in people with relapsing MS in a new analysis of a phase III trial.

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) was used in the trial, called TEMSO, to assess changes in brain volume from baseline in patients with Aubagio (teriflunomide) 14mg, 7mg or placebo.

The results showed that after 24 months median reduction in brain volume was 0.9% for Aubagio 14mg, 0.94% for 7mg and 1.29% for placebo.

Bill Sibold, head of Sanofi's Genzyme MS unit, said: “Control or prevention of brain atrophy is an important target for MS treatment.

“These results show the reduction in brain atrophy over two years add to the growing body of data for Aubagio. We remain committed to furthering the understanding of Aubagio and the potential benefits it could deliver to relapsing MS patients.”

The FDA approved Aubagio for MS in 2012, and although it was not considered to be as effective as rival treatments like Novartis' Gilenya (fingolimod), which achieved sales of $494m in 2011, it has a significantly favourable side effect profile that places it fairly well within the market.

Additionally, competition also comes from Biogen Idec's Tecfidera (dimethyl fumarate), which managed to sell three times more in 8 months than Aubagio managed in a full year.

Brain atrophy is the result of the destructive pathological processes that occur in MS. It is seen from the earliest stages of disease and leads to irreversible neurological and cognitive impairment.

A recent report from GlobalData states that the value of the multiple sclerosis market will rise from $17.2bn in 2014 to approximately $20bn by 2024. 

The market is expected to plateau from 2018 to 2020, but steady growth will resume from 2020 onwards as additional pipeline products become available. 

Article by
Nikhil Patel

7th October 2015

From: Research



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