New drug for epilepsy on its way



The Xenon company is performing clinical trials of its XEN1101 drug on humans.The product is expected to provide an opportunity for the treatment of epilepsy.

Researchers associated the dysfunction of potassium channels with epilepsy many years ago which eventually led to the development of drugs intended to moderate these problems by design.GlaxoSmithKline obtained approval for its first product affecting the potassium channel, ezogabine (2011).Despite this, the drug was withdrawn from the market last year due to its weak sales.Xenon is of the opinion that XEN1101 will do better in the market on account of its superior pharmacokinetics and selectivity.

Altogether, 20 volunteers participated in the trial. They were randomly assigned to one of two groups, either being treated with a 20 mg dose of XEN1101 or placebo.Those patients who received XEN1101 experienced a statistically significant change to their markers of corticospinal and cortical excitability throughout the following 6 hours.Since it is considered that increased excitability contributes to epileptic seizures, the discovery suggests that XEN1101 may help bring particular forms of epilepsy under control.The trials did not leave the company itself unaffected - the price for its shares has risen by 5%.Still, it is next to nothing when compared to this year's growth in total, exceeding 300%.


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