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Climate change to drive multiple sclerosis cases, fuel treatment market: Report

IANS Jun 08, 2024

Climate change is likely to have a significant impact on the rise in multiple sclerosis (MS) cases, increasing the need for effective approaches to treatment, according to a report on June 7.

Multiple sclerosis is an autoimmune disease of the central nervous system, which affects about 2.8 million people worldwide. The immune system attacks healthy nerve cells in an overreaction, causing them to continuously die.

The report by GlobalData, a data and analytics company, aligned with a June 2024 literature review, published in The Lancet Neurology, which revealed that climate change has the potential to intensify MS symptoms.

The report anticipates an uptick in the prevalence and disease severity of MS, and the need for newer and more effective approaches to treatment arises.

The main treatments for MS focus on slowing the disease’s progression and are disease-modifying therapies (DMTs).

The report forecasts that sales for MS DMTs will grow to $30.1 billion by 2030, at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 4.7 per cent during 2020 -30.

“Climate change-related exacerbations of MS will necessitate the development of novel, more effective DMTs as disease flare-ups become more frequent with fluctuating temperatures,” said the Pharma Analyst at GlobalData.

Currently, there are two ongoing Phase III clinical trials in which Novartis’s remibrutinib and Genentech’s fenebrutinib are being evaluated in comparison to the presently available standard of care -- Sanofi’s Aubagio (teriflunomide) in patients with relapsing MS.

“These trials signify pharmaceutical companies’ interest in developing more effective DMTs, as the severity of MS symptoms is getting magnified due to climate change, a potential driver of growth in the MS market,” the Pharma Analyst said.

While research is being conducted and new health policies are under development, more effective DMTs have the potential to occupy the interlude as the main line of defence for MS patients against climate change.

Opdenakker stressed the need for “new and more effective therapeutic interventions to form an all-encompassing, coherent strategy for managing MS in line with climate change”. 

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