The anti-amyloid antibody BAN2401 from Biogen and Eisai flunked a phase II trial, failing to meet a primary endpoint at one year — but the companies are pushing through to 18 months to look at biomarkers. The antibody is structurally different from Biogen’s other amyloid-targeting drug, aducanumab. (Endpoints News)
FDA has slapped a class warning on all gadolinium contrast agents used in MRI, over concerns about adverse renal effects. (MedPage Today)
Avexis says it has launched an early study of its gene therapy AVXS-101 in infants and children with spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) Type 2. An earlier phase I study in Type 1 disease also met with positive results. The therapy has a very different mechanism of action from nusinersen (Spinraza), an antisense oligonucleotide drug that acts to induce expression of SMN, the protein lacking in SMA.
Overdose death rates from synthetic opioids other than methadone (i.e. fentanyl) doubled in a year, from 3.1 per 100,000 in 2015 to 6.2 per 100,000 in 2016. (NCHS Data Brief)
Yet another analysis finds there are no preventive interventions for dementia. (MedPage Today)
Jeffrey Cohen, MD, of the Cleveland Clinic, and Stephen Hauser, MD, of the University of California San Francisco, talk with JAMA about ocrelizumab (Ocrevus) for multiple sclerosis.
The Interdepartmental Serious Mental Illness Coordinating Committee (ISMICC), established by Congress under the 21st Century Cures Act, has released its first report. Among the findings: keep those with serious mental illness out of emergency rooms and jails, and increase access to care. (MedPage Today)