Experimental Treatment for Ulcerative Colitis Shows Promise in Trials

According to a story from Business Wire, the biotechnology company Abivax recently released the results from its Phase 2a clinical trial. This trial was testing its investigational product ABX464 as a treatment for ulcerative colitis. The results suggest that ABX464 could be an effective treatment for the condition. Abivax is focused on developing treatments that utilize the body’s own immune system for diseases such as cancer, HIV, and autoimmune illnesses.

About Ulcerative Colitis

Ulcerative colitis is a long term condition which is characterized by the appearance of ulcers and generalized inflammation of rectum and colon. The exact cause of the condition remains a mystery, but there do appear to be some risk factors, such as family history, diet, and exposure to the medication isotrentinoin. Smoking appears to have a slightly protective effect. Symptoms can include anemia, bloody diarrhea, weight loss, fever, and abdominal pain. They tend to appear in as relapsing-remitting pattern. In severe disease there is a risk of serious complications, such as megacolon or inflammatory disease in other parts of the body. The risk of colon cancer is also elevated. Treatment may include dietary changes, medication to control inflammation, and, when complications appear, surgery. To learn more about ulcerative colitis, click here.

Trial Results

The clinical trial data indicates the ABX464 was generally safe and well tolerated by patients. At eight weeks, the overall response rate was 70 percent. Mucosal healing was found in 50 percent of patients, and the drug was also able to induce clinical remission in 35 percent of patients. ABX464 was also found to be a fast acting treatment, with the initial therapeutic effects becoming noticeable at just two weeks. The drug also performed admirably in other measures. The biomarkler calprotectin was reduced by 4.4 times in comparison to just 1.6 times with placebo.

This data is encouraging and suggests that ABX464 could be a useful treatment for ulcerative colitis patients who are not responding very well to the currently available treatment approaches. The next step in the research and development process will be the initiation of the Phase 2b portion, which will be a dose-ranging study that will measure responses depending on different dosages.

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