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Category Archives: Clinical Trials

Pfizer’s new drug: Xeljanz

jak inhibitorPfizer has sailed through phase III trials with their new medication Xeljanz, a JAK inhibitor that te believe will be a game changer in the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis. This breakthrough medication is thought to not only rival big name biologicals like Humira, Enbrel, Simponi, etc…  While some trials had patients on a stable dose of methotrexate with Xeljanz some are still saying that it could be a potential methotrexate replacement. Pfizer estimates the drug to cost roughly $25,00 a year due to the cost of research and development but as the first new DMARD offered to RA patients in close to a decade the price may not be enough to hurt them. The price will however hurt us, at over $60 a day this ‘revolutionary drug’ will be out of the reach of many and I suspect some rheumatologists will be hesitant to put their patients on such an expensive medication [though IV medications like Remicade and Actemra can be pricey as well but not quite as bad].

Sources:

http://www.nature.com/nbt/journal/v29/n6/full/nbt0611-467.html

http://seekingalpha.com/article/812981-pfizer-s-success-with-its-jak-inhibitor

Stem Cells

tis but a scratchWhile not everyone believes stem cells are ethical I personally think that stem cell research has it’s place. Very recently various doctors have used [adult] stem cell treatments on chronically ill patients [rheumatoid arthritis patients are just now getting into these trials]. I have a close friend whose cousin has Muscular dystrophy and has been receiving treatments for years now [in Panama]. The treatments have  greatly improved his prognosis and quality of life. There are clinical trials in other countries directed towards RA patients [such as one major one in Mexico and another in Panama]. I have strongly considered the possibility of enrolling in one of these trials if we can’t get my medication situation under control.

Stem cells used to help RA patient:

http://www.cellmedicine.com/treatment/rheumatoid-arthritis/index.html

http://arthritis.about.com/b/2004/09/04/stem-cells-put-womans-rheumatoid-arthritis-into-remission.htm

Annnnnd…. No.

I contacted the clinical research center that is right next to my Rheumatologist about maybe enrolling in their trial over winter or summer break. They are apparently tied in with my doctors office and already had my records (Kind of weird but whatever). I spoke with them over the phone and basically they can’t let me be in trial due to time constraints and distance. This sucks. Every time you get turned down for a clinical trial it kind of feels like you’re being broken up with (being told you’re no [fill in the blank] enough). That may sound weird to ya’ll but that’s how I feel about it. At least this time I didn’t let myself get my hopes up to high so it wasn’t as bad when I was rejected. I only curled up in a stubborn ball of anger and frustration fo 2 days (as opposed to a week or so). I am going to continue looking for trials and the center in Dallas said they would call me if they thought there was a trial I might qualify for, so there’s that.

Any who I learned that dayquil and nyquil are gods gifts to sick students. I managed to get a passing grade on an AmGov test despite having Strep, Laryngitis, and a cold (yes all at once). I am feeling much better now though 🙂

 

P.S. Enjoy the squirrel.

Hope? wait a minute….

I started searching for RA clinical trials that I could still participate in with:

1. a low CRP level

2. no RA factor

3. low red cell count

4. on MTX

5. Having taken Humira at one point

Well I found such a study, which I was so excited about until I saw this:

Denmark
Recruiting
Frederiksberg, Denmark
Recruiting
Hellerup, Denmark
Recruiting
Hvidovre, Denmark
Netherlands
Recruiting
Nijmegen, Netherlands
Sweden
Recruiting
Goteburg, Sweden
Recruiting
Malmo, Sweden

That is the list of locations for this study… All of them *face palm* There’s no way I can go to Europe for treatment! It’s just supper disappointing…

It would cost $3000 to fly to Malmo, Sweden, just saying.

Here’s the study:

http://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT01235598?term=rheumatoid&rank=4

————————————————————————————————————————————–

I DID however continue looking and found a phase 1 trial in the same building as my rheumatologist in Dallas. I”m looking into that more now.

On a side not I would like to say that you know you’ve been looking for trials to long when upon seeing the letters LY you know it’s

A) an Eli Lilly drug trial

B) you don’t qualify

c) you suddenly remember the entire number sequence, drug, and method of delivery

thank you LY2127399 for brainwashing me, it was a long time coming.

Possible clinical trials?

This is going to be a very short post as I am very short on time. I’m beginning to think about looking into clinical trials again. Even though I didn’t qualify last time and it really, truly broke my heart, I think I should try again. Last time I failed to qualify due to low red cell count, low IGA, low iron, and oddly normal X-rays. I don’t know If any of these things have changed, but i feel like It just might be worth pursuing.

Clinical trials

After much hair pulling and gnashing of teeth I was finally able to get a hold of the people who actually run the study I want to be in. Here we are a little over a week and 8 phone calls and I’m officially in 🙂

Due to the fact that they need to see me ASAP in San Antonio I have to miss 3 days of school in my last 3 weeks of high school, this is unfortunate but necessary. My teachers have all cleared me to go so it’s all good. They will be testing my CCP and some other blood levels in an attempt to  officialize my diagnosis with blood work. After that they are going to test my blood over the next 3 years to track how my body reacts to my MTX and a new Ei Lilly drug that is a baff inhibitor that is injected. The doctor in charge is really excited about having an 18 year old in the study because I’m the absolute youngest possible and the only one under 25. In all seriousness this man really fought to get me into this study and I’m very excited that he’s giving me a chance to help find a cure and treatment for RA 🙂

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