According to a report by Evening Times, two new drugs targeting Huntington’s disease are on the way. Developed by Wave Life Sciences, the new drugs will soon undergo clinical trials in Glasgow. Patients with the initial symptoms of Huntington’s disease have already been selected. The trial is set to take place at the Queen Elizabeth University Hospital. Keep reading to learn more, or follow the original story here for additional details.
What is Huntington’s Disease?
Huntington’s disease is a progressive neurological condition. Over time, it attacks the brain, impairing various mental and physical functions. Huntington’s disease appears to primarily affect those with European ancestry. The condition is incredibly rare, affecting only three to seven people in every 100,000.
Huntington’s disease is caused by a mutation in the HTT gene. This gene is responsible for creating a protein thought to be involved in the health of neurons. Huntington’s can only be passed on if at least one parent is a carrier of the mutated HTT gene.
Common symptoms of Huntington’s disease include personality changes, mood swings, forgetfulness, and coordination problems. It is ultimately fatal.
Catching the Wave
Wave Life Sciences is a US-based group responsible for the new Huntington’s drugs being tested in Glasgow. Their primary focus lies in developing treatment for rare conditions like Huntington’s. Their new treatment is touted as being the first to target the root cause of Huntington’s disease.
Dr. Stuart Ritchie, who is lead researcher on the project, expressed an excitement that Glasgow had been chosen as the site of the clinical trials. Other comments suggest that there will be assistance from other Huntington’s disease groups based in west Scotland.
Trials for the pair of investigational treatments are expected to run at least one year. Furthermore, Wave Life Sciences expects to announce the results of this first batch of tests during the first half of 2019.
Chief executive of Scottish Huntington’s Association, John Eden, voiced support for the new treatment. In the same breath, however, he issued a reminder that there are people still living with Huntington’s while research continues. People living with Huntington’s, he said, along with their families, still require support.
No matter how promising a potential cure may be, Eden continues, there is still much to be done. To improve the lives of those currently living with this rare condition, Mr. Eden calls on people to help in any way they can.