RICHMOND, VA., June 25, 2009 - Insmed Inc. (NASDAQ CM: INSM), a biopharmaceutical company, today announced results from its exploratory U.S. Phase II clinical trial evaluating IPLEX™ (mecasermin rinfabate) in patients with myotonic muscular dystrophy (“MMD”). The randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled Phase II trial conducted in 13 centers across the U.S.
Scientists in the United States and Japan have identified a three-protein cluster that reseals damaged muscle-fiber membranes. The findings, published June 5, 2009, in the Journal of Biological Chemistry, could have implications for development of treatments for muscular dystrophies.
In experiments in mice, Michael Rudnicki, an MDA grantee at the Sprott Center for Stem Cell Research at Ottawa Hospital Research Institute (OHRI), and colleagues, found the WNT7a protein stimulates muscle repair by causing proliferation (an increase in number) of "satellite stem cells." They say the protein probably operates similarly in humans.
A new gene therapy approach to "silencing" disease-causing genetic information has been developed by researchers at Rutgers University in Piscataway, N.J., and Integrated DNA Technologies in Coralville, Ia.
Displacement of a protein called neuronal nitric oxide synthase (nNOS) from the membrane that surrounds each skeletal muscle fiber appears to be a much more important contributor to exercise intolerance and even cardiac degeneration in some forms of muscular dystrophy than previously recognized.
The identification of small molecules that can block the genetic defect that causes type 1 myotonic dystrophy (MMD1, or DM1) may be the first step toward developing a new drug treatment for the disease, say researchers at the University of Rochester (N.Y.) Medical Center (URMC).