A recent clinical trial for an anti-inflammatory drug has yielded encouraging results for patients who have previously suffered a heart attack.
The drug in question, canakinumab, was tested on 10,000 patients who had already experienced a heart attack and also had inflammation biomarkers. The four year-long clinical trial, sponsored by the drug’s manufacturer Novartis, yielded extremely positive results.
The study design called for a subcutaneous canakinumab injection every three months for the active group, or statins or placebo for the control groups. Patients participating in the trial were followed for four years.
At the end of the trial period, the study team reported a remarkable 15% reduction in the reocurrence of vascular events (including non-fatal heart attacks and strokes). Typically, about 25% of patients who survive a heart attack will experience another cardiac event within five years, despite regular medication. Canakinumab induced a marked reduction of such incidence.
In addition to that, the drug was found to reduce the incidence of cancer onset by about half.
According to medical sources, the results were ‘above and beyond’ for those patients taking statins, the current standard treatment for vascular inflammation.
About 200,000 require urgent medical treatment for a cardiac event in the UK alone every year.