Hey UC’ers…Check This Out!
Recently, like just a few days ago… there was some research published to PubMed that I think will help clear up many questions UC’ers and family members have with regards to existing and future biologic medications we can expect to hear about.
We talk about medications such as Humira and Remicade quite a bit on the site (or their sidekick names: Infliximab and Adalimumab), but there are many other medications and names on the horizon for both Ulcerative Colitis and Crohn’s disease.
The image below does a very good job of displaying graphically where things are at currently (early 2015).
Here is the Abstract from the study titled:
Current, new and future biological agents on the horizon for the treatment of inflammatory bowel diseases (read full study – click here)
Biological agents for inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD) targeting tumor necrosis factor (TNF) have changed the way to treat IBD refractory to standard medications and allowed us to reach new therapeutic goals such as mucosal healing and deep remission. A better understanding of the components of the pathological processes that are a hallmark of IBD has led to the development of a new family of biological agents in Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis. Biosimilars, which are copy versions of currently licensed biological agents, will be soon available. The biosimilar of infliximab is as effective and as safe as its originator in rheumatologic conditions, while a new anti-TNF agent, namely golimumab, has been recently approved for refractory ulcerative colitis. Beyond TNF blockers, anti-adhesion molecules appear to be a potent drug class for IBD. Vedolizumab was recently approved for both Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis. Numerous other compounds are in the pipeline. Ustekinumab looks very promising for Crohn’s disease. Smad7 antisense oligonucleotide might enrich our armamentarium if preliminary data are confirmed in upcoming clinical trials. Herein, we review the efficacy and safety of new and emerging biological agents that are currently investigated in IBD clinical trials.
**Also, one final note, the author(s) of this particular study have in the past received compensation from several of the drug companies who manufacture/develop several of the medications mentioned. You can read more about that in the full study linked to above
My Personal Expectations on Biologics…
Most definitely I’m guessing companies like AbbVie (which sold roughtly $13 billion last year from Humira sales according to this article on Bloomberg…) will continue to bring in billions in profits from biologics. Even with the current and up and coming “biosimilars”(think of biosimilars as the “generics” of biologic meds with similar but slightly different regulatory and FDA approval rules in some cases) which will continue to hit the markets in the coming years.
Will biologics continue to help many UC’ers and other IBD’ers and auto immune patients?…Of course! They help many now, as is clearly evident from some of the positive reviews on the Remicade, Humira, and some other medication review pages here on iHaveUC.com.
Without a doubt, biologic medications are big business, they help many folks, and they are here to stay. They aren’t just an IBD thing either. A whole bunch of auto-immune diseases are treated by biologics all over the globe. Psoriasis and arthritis to name a few.
What can you do to learn more and stay on-top of this?
- Talk to your Gastro doctors about what they are hearing and reading regarding new medications
- Use the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) webpage search functionality. They have a pretty easy to use search box that will find biologic related FDA news here – FDA Biologic Search Page
- Stay on-top of new PubMed studies, once a month pay a quick visit to PubMed.org (it’s a great resource)
- Join the iHaveUC newsletter…I’ll try my best to keep you up to date on this automatically – join here
Thanks for reading, and to read reviews from existing UC biologics and other meds that are already approved for UC, you can check out the medication reviews pages here: http://www.ihaveuc.com/category/medication-reviews/
(** Now, I don’t think it would be fair for me to leave out a personal bit of experience I’ve had with biologics. I myself have tried both Remicade and Humira to treat my UC that was active and at times very out of control back in 2009. And, like many people Remicade right off the bat helped me out to the point where I noticed the first rock hard poop fly through the water down to the bottom of the toilet bowl for the first time in MONTHS!! heck, maybe years.
But, like a fair amount of others too…I stopped having the positive effects of the Remicade, maybe you could say my body became resistant to it after the first infusion and the second and third subsequent infusions were not helpful at all. So, I eventually stopped taking it after three, and went to Humira shortly afterwards which was a nightmare for me. Skin problems, joint problems, and no help to my UC so stopped that shortly after starting too. I was devastated to learn that these two big name meds, meds which I had to get certain blood tests and special screenings for simply were not working for me either. It was tuff, sad, whatever you want to call it..but it happens. And, luckily for me, within a few months I was treating my UC with food and diet changes and that believe it or not is what ended up getting me symptom free and off medications completely. For a while I was way anti medications, and thought they were downright evil…but that has changed. I don’t use meds for my UC, but I know many who use the site do, and many get great benefits from them. And who knows, someday there might even be a UC medication that has zero side effects which helps a super high percentage of UC’ers. Would be great right. So in the end, I think its valuable to keep on top of the changes in the biologics world, and that’s part of why I’ve been focusing the past two posts of mine here on iHaveUC on this topic. )
I hope you read the published study, its pretty interesting. And I hope you have a super rippin rest of the week.