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Alexion Joins Eurordis, NORD And Patient Organizations Worldwide In Celebrating Rare Disease Day 2013

Stocks in this article: ALXN

About aHUS

aHUS is a chronic, ultra-rare, and life-threatening disease in which a genetic deficiency in one or more complement regulatory genes causes chronic uncontrolled complement activation, resulting in complement-mediated thrombotic microangiopathy (TMA), the formation of blood clots in small blood vessels throughout the body. 5,6 Permanent, uncontrolled complement activation in aHUS causes a life-long risk for TMA, which leads to sudden, catastrophic, and life-threatening damage to the kidney, brain, heart, and other vital organs, and premature death. 5,7 Sixty-five percent of all patients with aHUS require kidney dialysis, have permanent kidney damage or die within the first year after diagnosis despite plasma exchange or plasma infusion (PE/PI). 8,9 The majority of patients with aHUS who receive a kidney transplant commonly experience subsequent systemic TMA, resulting in a 90% transplant failure rate in these TMA patients. 10

aHUS affects both children and adults. 11 Complement-mediated TMA also causes reduction in platelet count (thrombocytopenia) and red blood cell destruction (hemolysis). While mutations have been identified in at least ten different complement regulatory genes, mutations are not identified in 30-50% of patients with a confirmed diagnosis of aHUS. 11

About PNH

PNH is an ultra-rare blood disorder in which chronic, uncontrolled activation of complement, a component of the normal immune system, results in hemolysis (destruction of the patient's red blood cells). PNH strikes people of all ages, with an average age of onset in the early 30s. 12 Approximately 10% of all patients first develop symptoms at 21 years of age or younger. 13 PNH develops without warning and can occur in men and women of all races, backgrounds and ages. PNH often goes unrecognized, with delays in diagnosis ranging from one to more than 10 years. 14 In the period of time before Soliris was available, it had been estimated that approximately one-third of patients with PNH did not survive more than five years from the time of diagnosis. 12 PNH has been identified more commonly among patients with disorders of the bone marrow, including aplastic anemia (AA) and myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS). 15-17 In patients with thrombosis of unknown origin, PNH may be an underlying cause. 12

About Soliris

Soliris is a first-in-class terminal complement inhibitor developed from the laboratory through regulatory approval and commercialization by Alexion. Soliris is approved in the U.S., European Union, Japan and other countries as the first and only treatment for patients with paroxysmal nocturnal hemoglobinuria (PNH), a debilitating, ultra-rare and life-threatening blood disorder, characterized by complement-mediated hemolysis (destruction of red blood cells). Soliris is indicated to reduce hemolysis.

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