A promising drug slowed brain shrinkage in progressive multiple sclerosis (MS) by nearly half, according to new research led by Cleveland Clinic. Very limited therapies are currently available for this disabling form of the disease.
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The definitive results of the phase 2 trial – published in the New England Journal of Medicine — showed that the drug ibudilast decreased progression of brain atrophy in progressive MS patients by 48 percent versus placebo. The two-year SPRINT-MS study was conducted at 28 sites with 255 patients.
“These findings are significant for patients with progressive MS,” said Robert Fox, MD, the study’s principal investigator and vice-chair for research in Cleveland Clinic’s Neurological Institute.