Scientists Move Closer To Creating Equivalent Of Male Viagra For Women.
The Los Angeles Times blog reported that "when Viagra [sildenafil] was first marketed, some sexual health experts suggested that it might work in women as well as men, providing a pharmacological aid for women with low levels of arousal (sometimes termed 'female sexual dysfunction' or 'female sexual arousal disorder')." Women haven't had great success with the little blue pill, however, which suggests "there's something about arousal in male versus female parts that differs physiologically." Now, however, researchers at Pfizer say they've made headway in finding a drug that could help some women with FSAD.
According to the article, the breakthrough came courtesy of rabbits. Researchers administered a drug known as UK-414,495 to female rabbits and it appeared to "mimic the human body's natural processes in bolstering" excitement". By specifically blocking the enzyme in the body that checks blood flow to" female genitalia, "the drug could allow for greater blood flow and greater physiological arousal, said Chris Wayman, the lead researcher on the project" that is detailed in the British Journal of Pharmacology. The "drug would not create arousal out of nowhere," but it will "boost blood flow when accompanied by desire and sexual stimulation."
What's more, it "will not affect desire, mood, or emotional problems," the UK's Daily Mail (4/14, Ellicott) reported. In short, "this is the first pill that claims to be an equivalent of the male Viagra."
Pfizer, however, "will not develop the drug and has said the chemical may not work in the same way in humans,while the particular chemical compound studied in this research did not prove appropriate for further development, the implications of the research could lead to the development of a product in future."
Blood Cancer Drug Campath May Help Patients With Multiple Sclerosis.
According to research presented at an American Academy of Neurology meeting.reports that "Genzyme Corp.'s blood cancer drug Campath [alemtuzumab] helped patients with multiple sclerosis," The drug "halted the development of disease-related disabilities and prevented relapses in 71 percent of patients in a four-year study, compared with 35 percent with Merck KGaA's competing product Rebif [interferon beta 1a]."
InterMune Adds Ritonavir To Second Part Of Hepatitis C Treatment Study.
InterMune Inc. said Wednesday researchers will add a new drug that promises an increased safety margin to a midstage study of a potential hepatitis C treatment after analyzing preliminary results." The company "said the first part of the study paired the experimental treatment, labeled ITMN-191 [danoprevir], with the drugs Pegasys [Peginterferon alfa-2a] and Copegus [ribavirin]," and the "second part of the study will include those drugs and the virus-fighting drug ritonavir." InterMune Chairman and CEO Dan Welch said the combination with ritonavir "appears to deliver strong efficacy and offer attractive advantages of dosing convenience and increased safety margin."
Rituximab May Benefit Patients With Myasthenia Gravis.
According to a study presented at an American Academy of Neurology meeting, "Rituximab (Rituxan), the anti-CD20 antibody that decreases B-cell activation, slashed autoantibody titers and improved symptoms in patients with myasthenia gravis (MG) refractory to standard therapies," Researchers said that "thirteen MG patients whose disease was not well controlled with moderate steroid doses were able to do better symptomatically and could reduce conventional treatments when rituximab was added to their therapy."
High-Dose Aspirin May Provide Acute Migraine Relief.
MedPage Today reported, "High-dose aspirin matched a triptan drug for relief of acute migraine," Oxford researchers found after reviewing 13 studies in which 4,222 people received either "aspirin with or without an antiemetic, placebo, or an active comparator, most often sumatriptan 50 mg or 100 mg." A "fourth of patients treated with 900 to 1,000 mg of aspirin, with or without an antiemetic, were pain free after two hours, and half of patients had no more than mild residual pain," according to a paper in The Cochrane Library. "Results for most outcomes were similar for patients treated with sumatriptan."
Fidaxomicin May Be As Effective As Vancomycin In Patients With Clostridium Difficile Infection.
Medscape reported, "Phase 3 clinical trial results...show that fidaxomicin is at least as effective as vancomycin (equivalent cure rates) in patients with Clostridium difficile infection (CDI)." The drug was also "associated with significantly lower recurrence rates, particularly in patients infected with the emerging hypervirulent BI/NAP1/027 subtype of C difficile that has proven especially difficult to treat," researchers in Canada explained. Notably, the drug's manufacturer, Optimer Pharmaceuticals, "plans to submit a New Drug Application for fidaxomicin to the US Food and Drug Administration later this year, according to the company website."