Whilst I’m not exactly holding my breath for a cure, news of possible future celiac disease treatments are always pretty exciting.
After positive results from a Phase 11a trial with an experimental drug called Alvine AVL003, a company called Abbvie have secured the rights to the treatment, paying Alvine $70 million in upfront costs. Alvine is getting ready for a Phase 11b trial which will involve 500 patients.
The way the drug works is similar to lactase pills, which many sufferers of lactose intolerance take. An enzyme breaks down a chemical that the body cannot deal with.
In the case of this gluten-killing drug, ALV003 contains two proteases, enzymes that chop up proteins specific to gluten, which have been effective and safe in Phases 1 and 11a clinical trials in comparison to placebo.
“A collaboration between Alvine and AbbVie combines our respective strengths and expertise in the development of what could become the first therapeutic option for this major unmet medical need,” said Abhay Joshi, Ph.D., president and chief executive officer at Alvine. “We are pleased to have an industry leader in gastroenterology as a collaborator, whose considerable global development reach can be focused on getting this novel therapy to more patients.”
This drug was given fast-track status by the Food & Drug Administration in September 2012 and could be on the market in as little as five years.
This brings us back to the important question, would you take a pill which would allow you to eat gluten?
Post authored by The Gluten-Free Traveller