Compugen protein "abolishes" relapses in MS animal study

Shares of Israel's Compugen were buoyed late last week after the developer said that one of its experimental therapies was able to "completely abolish" spontaneous relapses of multiple sclerosis in an animal study. In addition, researchers said that administering the protein CGEN-15001 prior to the onset of the disease delayed onset and reduced symptoms common for the ailment.

"The capacity of CGEN-15001 to prevent the development of disease in this well-recognized animal model for multiple sclerosis, and more significantly to ameliorate its progression when administered in the presence of pre-existing disease is quite dramatic," said Professor Stephen Miller from Northwestern University, who conducted the animal study. "Furthermore, these beneficial effects were shown to be long lasting and persisted through the study, indicating that CGEN-15001 may prevent disease progression as efficiently as immune tolerance induction, a process whereby the immune system no longer attacks the self antigens that cause the disease. These findings, together with those demonstrated in our earlier studies, are unique among the molecules targeting the B7 family of co-stimulatory molecules that have been published to date."

Relapsing-remitting MS is the most common form of the disease, afflicting 85 percent of the people who have to contend with MS. Compugen has announced the development of two discovery platforms this year. Compugen shares (CGEN) were up 3.6 percent on the announcement last week.

- check out the Compugen release for more info
- here's the Dow Jones story