Novartis launches a new campaign to raise awareness of MS

NovartisToday Novartis is joining the global multiple sclerosis (MS) community in celebration of World MS Day by launching a new campaign and participating in initiatives that encourage information and experience exchange around MS. Novartis is committed to supporting the MS community through these initiatives, in addition to delivering and researching innovative treatments to help address the high unmet medical needs of people with MS at every stage of the disease.

World MS Day was created by the Multiple Sclerosis International Foundation (MSIF) in 2009 to raise global awareness of MS and its impact on approximately 2.5 million people with MS around the world[1],[2]. This year's World MS Day campaign focuses on young people; MS is normally diagnosed between the ages of 20 and 40[3], but can also occur earlier in life. This diagnosis can be devastating at a time when young people may be starting careers and making plans for the future.

"Novartis proudly supports World MS Day, and we recognize and support the importance of creating dialogue amongst people with MS and the wider community to help create an environment of understanding," said David Epstein, Head of the Pharmaceuticals Division of Novartis Pharma AG. "As a leader in the field of MS, we are not only committed to hosting initiatives that foster this dialogue exchange, but also to ensuring that people with MS have the appropriate care and support to manage their disease."

MS and:Our Story
Novartis is proud to introduce MS and:Our Story, an interactive online campaign launched today which aims to capture the inspiring real-life stories of the MS community to increase awareness of MS and the unique experiences of those living with the disease. The campaign consists of a series of four animated films that chronicle the lives of people with MS and those who help care for them. The films are hosted on a dedicated website, www.msandourstory.com, and can also be accessed through links on Twitter and Facebook.

From now until the end of August, the global MS community will also have the opportunity to submit their personal story on www.msandourstory.com for the chance to have it produced into an animated video featured on the website. More information about the campaign, including how to submit MS stories and key timings, can be accessed at www.msandourstory.com.

Novartis initiatives to support World MS Day
Social Media Engagement: The Novartis Pinterest page is also launched today. Images and videos of interest to the MS community will be posted regularly and can be accessed via http://pinterest.com/novartis/.

2nd International MS Patient Summit: On May 17, 2013, Novartis hosted the 2nd International MS Patient Summit in Dublin on 'Young People with MS: Staying Active and Interactive' in partnership with MS Ireland. Leading MS patient organizations and advocates and bloggers met in advance of World MS Day to discuss topics of particular relevance to young people with MS.

Novartis Group company offices around the globe are also conducting activities in support of World MS Day, including Brazil, Greece, Ireland, Portugal, Spain, Turkey, the UK and USA. Initiatives range from raising MS awareness through surveys and public events, to developing patient support materials and partnering with patient associations, physicians and parliamentarians to highlight the challenges people with MS face when trying to access specialists and treatments.

Novartis' Research Commitment to MS
Novartis is leading the way in delivering and researching ground-breaking therapies to help address the high unmet medical need in MS.

Marketed products
Extavia® (interferon beta 1b for subcutaneous injections) is approved to treat people with relapsing forms of MS, secondary progressive MS with active disease and people who have had a single clinical event suggestive of MS[4].

Gilenya® (fingolimod), the first oral therapy approved to treat relapsing forms of MS is the first in a new class of compounds called sphingosine 1-phosphate receptor modulators[5],[6]. Gilenya is also being investigated for the treatment of primary progressive MS.

Investigational Medicines
In addition to these marketed products, the Novartis portfolio includes investigational compounds BAF312 (siponimod), a second generation S1P modulator for patients with secondary progressive multiple sclerosis currently being studied in a Phase III trial; and AIN457 (secukinumab), a fully human monoclonal antibody inhibiting interleukin-17A (IL-17A) with a Phase IIb trial for patients with relapsing remitting multiple sclerosis due to start in June 2013.

About Multiple Sclerosis
While its exact cause is unknown, multiple sclerosis (MS) is an autoimmune disease of the central nervous system (CNS) that causes the body to turn against itself by mistaking normal cells for foreign cells[7]. In MS, the immune system attacks the fatty layer that surrounds and protects nerve fibers, called myelin[8]. This activity damages the myelin and strips it off the nerve fibers[8], causing a range of physical and mental problems including loss of muscle control and strength, vision, balance, sensation and mental function[9]. Up to 2.5 million people worldwide are affected by MS[2], most often in younger people between the ages of 20 and 40[3].

About Novartis
Novartis provides innovative healthcare solutions that address the evolving needs of patients and societies. Headquartered in Basel, Switzerland, Novartis offers a diversified portfolio to best meet these needs: innovative medicines, eye care, cost-saving generic pharmaceuticals, preventive vaccines and diagnostic tools, over-the-counter and animal health products. Novartis is the only global company with leading positions in these areas. In 2012, the Group achieved net sales of USD 56.7 billion, while R&D throughout the Group amounted to approximately USD 9.3 billion (USD 9.1 billion excluding impairment and amortization charges). Novartis Group companies employ approximately 129,000 full-time-equivalent associates and operate in more than 140 countries around the world.

1. http://www.worldmsday.org/wordpress/about-world-ms-day/. Accessed April 2013
2. Multiple Sclerosis International Federation. Atlas of MS [online]. Available at: www.atlasofms.org. Accessed April 2013
3. http://emsp.org/multiple-sclerosis/ms-fact-sheet. Accessed April 2013
4. Extavia SmPC http://www.ema.europa.eu/docs/en_GB/document_library/EPAR_-_Product_Information/human/000933/WC500034701.pdf. Accessed May 2013
5. Brinkmann V. FTY720 (fingolimod) in multiple sclerosis: therapeutic effects in the immune and the central nervous system. Br J Pharmacol 2009;158(5):1173-1182.
6. Chun J, Hartung HP. Mechanism of Action of Oral Fingolimod (FTY720) in Multiple Sclerosis. Clin Neuropharmacol. 2010 March-April;33(2):91-101.
7. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmedhealth/PMH0001747/. Accessed April 2013
8. http://www.mssociety.org.uk/what-is-ms/information-about-ms/about-ms. Accessed April 2013
9. http://www.nationalmssociety.org/about-multiple-sclerosis/what-we-know-about-ms/symptoms/index.aspx. Accessed April 2013

Most Popular Now

Fasenra (benralizumab) receives US FDA approval fo…

AstraZeneca and its global biologics research and development arm, MedImmune, announced that the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved Fasenra (benralizumab)...

Alzheimer's disease might be a 'whole body' proble…

Alzheimer's disease, the leading cause of dementia, has long been assumed to originate in the brain. But research from the University of British Columbia and Chinese scie...

Cancer cells destroyed with dinosaur extinction me…

Cancer cells can be targeted and destroyed with the metal from the asteroid that caused the extinction of the dinosaurs, according to new research by an international col...

Novartis confirms leadership in multiple sclerosis…

Novartis today announced it will present 54 scientific abstracts from across its multiple sclerosis (MS) research portfolio at the 7th Joint European and Americas Committ...

Pfizer receives FDA approval for SUTENT® (sunitini…

Pfizer Inc. (NYSE:PFE) today announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved a new indication expanding the use of SUTENT® (sunitinib malate) to include...

Amgen and Novartis announce expanded collaboration…

Amgen (NASDAQ:AMGN) and Novartis announced an expanded collaboration with the Banner Alzheimer's Institute (BAI) to initiate a new trial - the Alzheimer's Prevention Init...

Transplanted hematopoietic stem cells reverse dama…

Researchers at University of California San Diego School of Medicine report that a single infusion of wildtype hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells (HSPCs) into a mous...

Novartis announces the planned acquisition of Adva…

Novartis announced today, that it has entered a memorandum of understanding with Advanced Accelerator Applications (AAA) under which Novartis intends to commence a tender...

'Precision Medicine' may not always be so precise

Precision Medicine in oncology, where genetic testing is used to determine the best drugs to treat cancer patients, is not always so precise when applied to some of the w...

New tissue-engineered blood vessel replacements on…

Researchers at the University of Minnesota have created a new lab-grown blood vessel replacement that is composed completely of biological materials, but surprisingly doe...

New US study reveals key reasons why millions of p…

Few of the more than 90 million Americans(1) with obesity are seeking and receiving long-term obesity care, according to new data from the Awareness, Care and Treatment I...

China's out of control 'silent killer' affects one…

More than one-third of adults in China have high blood pressure - often dubbed the "silent killer" for its lack of symptoms - but only about one in 20 have the condition ...

Pharmaceutical Companies

[ A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Z ]