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Santaris Presents Phase IIa Data on microRNA-Targeting HCV Drug


Santaris Pharma this week announced additional data from its phase IIa trial of miravirsen, its locked nucleic acid-based miR-122 inhibitor for the treatment of hepatitis C.

In the trial, treatment-naive HCV patients received weekly doses of the drug at either 3 mg/kg, 5 mg/kg, or 7 mg/kg levels over 29 days via subcutaneous injection.

Of the nine patients treated at the highest dose, four became HCV RNA undetectable during the study, Santaris said. Additionally, the therapy resulted in a mean reduction of 2 to 3 logs from baseline RNA levels, which was maintained for more than four weeks after the end of treatment.

"These data ... show that longer duration of miravirsen monotherapy has the potential to produce sustained virological responses,” Harry Janssen, lead investigator of the study, said in a statement.

The data were presented at the this month's meeting of the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases. Additional data were presented ahead of the meeting last month (GSN 10/6/2011).

The Scan

Pig Organ Transplants Considered

The Wall Street Journal reports that the US Food and Drug Administration may soon allow clinical trials that involve transplanting pig organs into humans.

'Poo-Bank' Proposal

Harvard Medical School researchers suggest people should bank stool samples when they are young to transplant when they later develop age-related diseases.

Spurred to Develop Again

New Scientist reports that researchers may have uncovered why about 60 percent of in vitro fertilization embryos stop developing.

Science Papers Examine Breast Milk Cell Populations, Cerebral Cortex Cellular Diversity, Micronesia Population History

In Science this week: unique cell populations found within breast milk, 100 transcriptionally distinct cell populations uncovered in the cerebral cortex, and more.