The competition’s heating up over a $35 billion market to treat NASH, a ‘silent disease’ millions are living with. But some of the early results don’t look promising.


Liver transplant

NASH, short for nonalcoholic steatohepatitis, is a type of liver disease in which liver fat builds up in people.
It affects an estimated 16 million Americans, but many don’t know it until it leads to more serious problems like liver failure and cirrhosis.
Drugmakers are looking at different ways to treat the condition — both early and later as the disease progresses. Some are conducting research to better understand the genetics and other factors associated with NASH.
On Monday, Gilead said that its first late-stage NASH trial for its drug selonsertib had failed. Analysts said the company’s appetite to tackle the $35 billion market has only intensified.
There are more late-stage trial results expected in 2019 from rivals Intercept, Genfit, and Allergan.

Millions of people are living with a disease they’ve likely never heard of.

NASH, short for nonalcoholic steatohepatitis, is a type of liver disease in which liver fat builds up in people. NASH has become more common in recent years, and it’s estimated to affect about 16 million Americans.

It’s often called a “silent” disease because most people don’t know they have it until it leads to problems like cirrhosis and liver failure.

While the term NASH was coined in 1980, research into it didn’t ramp up right away, partly because the disease was regarded as a mild one. It’s a disease linked with our eating habits, or at least exacerbated by them. Although you might not know someone officially diagnosed, people with obesity, Type 2 diabetes, and insulin resistance have an elevated risk of developing the disease. Its links to other conditions have researchers specializing in everything from the liver to diabetes and obesity interested in seeing if there are ways to treat the condition earlier.

NASH is set to surpass viral hepatitis as the biggest reason for liver transplants by 2020, and the eventual size of the market for treating the disease is expected to be anywhere between $20 billion and $35 billion, according to a report from Reuters.

Read more: Trump just promised to end the HIV epidemic. This map shows the areas of the US that are home to the most people living with the disease.

In the meantime, the competition is heating up to see who can find a way to treat it, with companies taking a range of approaches to treat it at different stages, varying based on the specialties of the scientists looking into the treatments.

One of the first drug trials for NASH just failed

In 2019, we’re starting to get the first batch of late-stage trial readouts, though so far, it hasn’t been too positive. On Monday, Gilead said that its first late-stage NASH trial for its drug selonsertib had failed. Analysts at RBC Capital Markets said the company’s appetite to tackle the NASH market has only intensified.

Gilead’s stock fell 4.4% to $64.62 on Tuesday.

Other late-stage trial results are expected in 2019 from rivals Intercept, and Genfit, with a drug from Allergan also in a phase 3 trial.

“It’s like …read more

Source:: Business Insider

      

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