Sunday, April 28, 2013

Possible Cures for Type-1 in the News (April)

Unfortunately, this is bad news.  But here it is:

Canakinumab and Anakinra Both Fail Phase-II Trials in Honeymooners

Canakinumab (brand name Ilaris, previously known as ACZ885) and Anakinra (brand name Kineret) are different drugs, but they have a lot in common.  Both target IL-1, which is part of the immune system.  Canakinumab is already approved in the US for the treatment of cryopyrin-associated periodic syndromes. Anakinra is already approved in the US for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis.  Unfortunately, both failed Phase-II trials for type-1 diabetes.  Here is the quote from the abstract:
Canakinumab and anakinra were safe but were not effective as single immunomodulatory drugs in recent-onset type 1 diabetes.
A previous, smaller test of Anakinra had also failed.  


I occasionally hear arguments that testing drugs on NOD mice is the wrong approach.  That we should not bother to do that, and just go straight to human testing.  People who make this argument are quick to point out that NOD mice are commonly cured of type-1 diabetes, but none of these cures have worked in people.  They often go a step farther and suggest that maybe NOD mice are so different that they are leading researchers astray.  That a successful mice cure means it won't work on people, and conversely that drugs that work on people might not work on mice.

However, both of these drugs were tested initially in people.  They were never tested (alone) in NOD mice.  And they both failed.  Of course, two examples don't prove anything.  However it does support the idea that curing type-1 diabetes is tough no matter if you test first in mice or first in people.


Clinical Trial Records:


Joshua Levy
All the views expressed here are those of Joshua Levy, and nothing here is official JDRF or JDCA news, views, policies or opinions. My blog contains a more complete non-conflict of interest statement. Thanks to everyone who helps with the blog. 
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