Are we on the verge of blockbuster 1.5?

Posted on Apr 1, 2015
Are we on the verge of blockbuster 1.5?




The established consensus today is we’re working within the post-blockbuster era. Undoubtedly technology will unleash a new era of discoveries and commentators will be quick to announce the blockbuster 2.0 era.

A phase 2 trial currently planned in the UK could be official marking of a 1.5 era for well-established drugs in new therapeutic classes. The MS Smart trial will explore the impact of combining Amiloride, Fluoxetine and Rilozole in treating second stage Multiple-Sclerosis.

The trial, managed by University College London and the University of Edinburgh, will test the efficacy and safety across 400 participants. The most intriguing point is made by Dr Jeremy Chataway, lead consultant neurologist on the trial:

“It may be the case that we have already invented the drugs we need to treat MS.”

“In the same way that aspirin was developed as a painkiller and is now used to treat stroke patients, we may well have invented the drugs that we need, we just don’t know that they work in different situations than what they were invented for.”

The potential for off-label trials in new therapeutic classes, perhaps in combination with other established drugs, could herald an interesting era and re-awaken research and investment markedly. Undoubtedly recent mergers and acquisitions are aligning manufacturers in readiness. The costs for market access will be reduced and better-life outcomes, even for the most challenging conditions, might already exist.

Posted by: Kingsley Roberts