MS Wonder Drug May Be Gone For Good

Your probably recall an article I posted two weeks ago about the alleged multiple sclerosis (MS) wonder drug Tysabri being pulled by the two companies that made it (Biogen Idec and Elan Corp.) due to reports two patients had developed progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy (PML), a rare infection of the brain and spinal cord. One of those patients had died, leaving Tysabri's future very much up in the air, and halting a clinical trial.

It appears Tysabri may be off the market for good after a third patient was reported yesterday with PML. A recent review of medical records revealed another suspected case, involving a patient who had died during the course of a clinical trial in 2003 to test Tysabri's effect on Crohn's disease. At the time, the patient's death was attributed to a form of brain cancer.

No surprise, the fortunes of Biogen and Elan have taken a huge hit, with the latter company in particularly serious trouble. Experts had predicted sales of Tysabri would've peaked to some $4 billion in 2009, with Elan and Biogen sharing equally in the profits.

A quick list of safer alternatives for fighting MS that doesn't involve interferons or any other toxic drugs:

CBS MarketWatch March 31, 2005

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