Danish biopharmaceutical firm NeuroSearch has announced in a press release that the first patients have now been treated in a randomised trial of its novel Huntington’s disease drug ACR16. The pivotal placebo-controlled trial is expected to include a total of 220 patients with Huntington’s disease, and will be conducted in a number of centres in the US and Canada.
NeuroSearch also confirmed that the ongoing European multicentre Phase III study of ACR16 in Huntington’s disease, which started up in April 2008, is progressing satisfactorily.
Flemming Pedersen, CEO of NeuroSearch, comments in the press release that the initiation of the study represents an important milestone on the path towards getting ACR16 onto the market and available for patients suffering from Huntington’s disease. Pedersen expresses confidence that NeuroSearch will have the first key data in H2 2009, and will be able to apply for market registration soon thereafter.
Huntington’s disease is a rare, inherited neurological disorder first described by the New York physician George Huntington in 1872. It is caused by a faulty gene which leads to progressive degeneration of nerve cells in the brain, resulting in a wide and distressing range of symptoms. The prevalence of Huntington’s disease is 5 to 8 per 100,000, varying geographically.
NeuroSearch develops novel drugs based on a broad and well-established drug discovery platform focusing on ion channels and CNS disorders. A substantial part of the company’s activities are partner financed through a broad alliance with GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) and collaborations with Abbott and Astellas.
NeuroSearch is listed on the Nasdaq OMX Nordic Exchange Copenhagen.