TN currently affects approximately 50,000 people in the USA alone. The majority of people affected are over 50 years of age, however many cases have been reported in young adults. TN is more prevalent in women than men, and for most sufferers, the condition is progressive and worsens over time. TN is commonly misdiagnosed and to date there is no guaranteed cure for the condition. Current therapies are centred on sodium channel blockers such as carbamazepine or oxcarbazepine as first-line treatments. However, these agents although providing relief, are often poorly tolerated, and require lengthy dose escalation, resulting in sub-optimal efficacy.
Clive Dix, Chief Executive Officer of Convergence Pharmaceuticals, added: "These interim data are very encouraging. Based on its preclinical and clinical profile, CNV1014802 offers the potential as an effective treatment for neuropathic pain, with a potentially better tolerability profile and wider therapeutic index than currently available treatments. We look forward to reporting full clinical results by the end of 2013."
The need for new drug treatments for chronic pain
The Pain therapeutic area encompasses any disease where pain is a major symptom. The unmet medical need for patients in pain is enormous, with the greatest need being for a more effective therapy that is well tolerated and safe over a long period of time. Within the pain marketplace, current pain treatments are unsatisfactory; overall efficacy is poor (typically 1-2 point reductions on a 10 point scale) and satisfactory to less than 50% of patients. Whilst treatments, such as opioids and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, are available on the market, many patients obtain little or no relief from these existing analgesics and often such drugs are associated with adverse events, side effects and addiction concerns. This highlights the importance of Convergence Pharmaceuticals' goals to be a world leader in the development of novel, efficacious analgesics with improved pharmacology and safety profiles.