Tuesday, 18 February 2014

Nogo antibody study for spinal cord injury recovery


Nogo is a protein that only occurs in the central nervous system and prevents nerve regeneration. However, anti-Nogo antibodies make damaged nerve fibres grow.

As part of a worldwide study with pharmaceutical company Novartis, we are currently running tests involving paralysed patients.


FAQ on the Nogo antibody study

What is the Nogo antibody study actually about?

The study aims to prove that Nogo antibodies can make damaged nerve fibres regrow in humans (not just animals) and that this growth can lead to partial improvement of the body's functions and sensitivity. At present, this medication is in an early clinical stage and is undergoing pharmacokinetic tests and tests for tolerance (to determine possible side-effects). Treatment involves injecting Nogo antibodies into the spinal fluid and must be administered within 14 days of the accident. The Nogo antibody study is being conducted in Switzerland in close cooperation between the Paraplegic Centre at Balgrist University Hospital, various trauma centres and Novartis. We are the testing centre for Switzerland - our clinic is the only one in Switzerland offering this treatment at present.

The Nogo antibody study is giving people hope. Can people in the acute stage of spinal paralysis be helped?

Unfortunately, we will currently have to disappoint anyone who is hoping that this may be a cure. At best, we can expect improvements to movement and sensitivity, which will be useful to paralysed people in their day-to-day lives. For example, a tetraplegic may require less assistance or a paraplegic may regain some sensitivity in paralysed body parts. For the time being, the aim of the Nogo antibody study is to test tolerance in humans and check for any side-effects.

Read the rest here.

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