US Based ‘Alnylam’ A Pharmaceutical Company Who Is Developing Novel Therapeutics Based On RNA Interference
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Last August, Cambridge, Massachusetts–based Alnylam Pharmaceuticals became the first company to bring an RNA interference (RNAi) treatment to market, winning FDA approval for its drug Onpattro. The drug treats peripheral nerve damage and other symptoms in people with the rare and previously untreatable condition of hereditary amyloidosis, a disease that causes abnormal amyloid proteins to build up in the body’s nerves and organs and interfere with tissue and organ function.According to CEO John Maraganore, RNAi treatments target ailments further upstream than most existing medicines by “silencing” the production of disease-causing proteins—without altering a patient’s underlying DNA code, which can yield unintended effects. Onpattro, he says, is just the start: Alnylam pharmaceuticals has five RNAi-based drugs in the final phase of trials—including ones targeting high cholesterol (which affects 11% of all Americans) and hemophilia—and several more in development.
In addition, last May, Alnylam reported results of a study that successfully delivered an RNAi drug into regions of the brain and spinal cord, demonstrating the therapy’s potential to treat neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, and ALS.
Based on Nobel Prize-winning science, RNAi therapeutics represent a powerful, clinically validated approach for the treatment of a wide range of severe and debilitating diseases.
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