The National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences is embarking on its first clinical trial, reports the Nature News Blog. The trial is examining a drug, called DEX-M74, for hereditary inclusion body myopathy, a condition that strikes young adults and for which there is no treatment, a press release adds. The trial is being conducted in conjunction with the National Human Genome Research Institute and New Zealand Pharmaceuticals.
The trial, the Nature News Blog notes, begins as Chris Austin takes up the post of director of NCATS. Austin adds that there will be more NCATS trials and that those trials will also test out new technologies and trial approaches. For example, in the current trial, Austin says that they are collecting genetic and other medical information from participants that will help evaluate this drug but also other treatments for progressive diseases.
"The NIH has achieved a significant milestone in the development of a potential treatment for HIBM, and we are excited about this research reaching the clinical trial stage," says NZP CEO Andy Lewis in a statement. "The pre-clinical data are very strong, and we are keen to see DEX-M74 progress through the clinical phases. Once we have proven human efficacy we plan to offer DEX-M74 to patients."