The world's first clinical trial of new cellular immunotherapy for multiple sclerosis (MS) has found that it improves symptoms and quality of life for the majority of patients.
Clinical trial results have been published on JCI Insight.
This treatment targets the Epstein-Barr virus (EBV). This is based on the theory of Professor Michael Pender, from The University of Queensland and Royal Brisbane and Women Hospital (RBWH), that MS is caused by the accumulation of EBV-infected cells in the brain and that therapies targeting EBV can potentially stop the development of MS .
New cellular immunotherapy was developed by Professor Rajiv Khanna and his team at the QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute. Phase I clinical trials were carried out in collaboration with Professor Michael Pender and his colleagues.
Pender said, a total of 10 patients – five with secondary progressive MS and five with primary progressive MS – received four doses of cellular immunotherapy in RBWH.
"Seven of these patients showed improvement. Without this treatment, we would expect their symptoms to continue to worsen," Pender said.
"Improvements range from reducing fatigue and increasing productivity and quality of life to improvements in vision and mobility. Importantly, we find that care is safe and without serious side effects. Our findings add to the evidence that EBV infection plays a role in development." from MS, "Pender added.
Khanna said this was the first time in the world that T cell immunotherapy had been used to treat autoimmune diseases.
"We have used cellular immunotherapy to treat various types of cancer and viral infections. This clinical trial is a breakthrough because for the first time we found this treatment safe and has positive improvements in autoimmune diseases," Khanna said.
"This experiment opens the door to developing similar immunotherapy for certain other autoimmune conditions. From this phase of my trial, we have also discovered what cell properties produce the best results for patients. We can now apply this knowledge to cellular immunotherapy for other diseases. try to ensure the best results for all patients, "Khanna added.
Multiple Sclerosis can cause a variety of symptoms including coordination, balance, weakness, arm and leg function, cognitive problems and memory loss.
(This story has not been edited by Standard Business staff and is automatically generated from syndicated feeds.)