May 27, 2013 | By Márcio Barra
Alzheimer’s disease isn’t the only neurologic disease that is hard to find a cure. Parkinson’s disease is an equally tough match, with current treatments, like dopamine agonists, only aimed at symptom relief. In what are sour news for patients, a promising new drug failed to prove successful in treating Parkinson.
Last Thursday, Merck released a press statement declaring that it stopped the development of Preladenant, an investigational Parkinson’s disease medicine which acted as a selective antagonist at the adenosine A2A receptor, responsible for regulating glutamate and dopamine release in the brain.
The development was discontinued after the medicine failed to prove better than a placebo in three separate Phase III studies, two of which assessed Preladenant alongside levodopa in patients with moderate-to-severe Parkinson, and one assessed Preladenant as monotherapy in early Parkinson. No safety issues were reported, according to the company.
The results of these studies will be presented at an upcoming scientific meeting and will be submitted for publication in a peer-reviewed journal. While disheartening news, It’s important that pharma companies continue to push forward in unmet medical needs treatment. Hopefully the publication will shed some light on why did Preladenant fail.