Drug Works for Treating MS

Laquinimod slows progression of multiple sclerosis

/ Author:  / Reviewed by: Joseph V. Madia, MD

(RxWiki News) Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a disease that comes in episodes. Each attack of MS symptoms can be different. Even though there is no cure for MS, research shows that a new drug can slow down the crippling effects of the disease.

Researchers found that MS patients who took the drug laquinimod had fewer relapses of MS. In addition, laquinimod reduced brain atrophy - the loss of brain cells - and slowed down how quickly patients became disabled.

"Laquinimod helps MS patients manage their disease."

According to the lead author Giancarlo Comi, M.D., from the University Vita-Salute San Raffaele in Italy, the study's results are exciting, as they show that laquinimod has a huge effect on controlling MS while also being safe.

Because laquinimod addresses both the inflammatory activity and the irreversible tissue damage of MS, says Comi, laquinimod seems like it will play a significant role in treating multiple sclerosis in the future.

Moreover, the researchers found that laquinimod is a fairly safe drug.

In Depth

For their study, researchers assigned 1,106 multiple sclerosis patients to take either a daily oral dose of laquinimod or placebo for two years. At the end of the two-year study, patients who took laquinimod experienced:

  • A 23 percent reduction in relapses of MS symptoms
  • A 36 percent reduction in the progression of disability
  • A 33 percent reduction in brain atrophy 
Reviewed by: 
Review Date: 
April 14, 2011
Last Updated:
April 15, 2011