(June 3, 2010 – Washington, DC) LUPUS FOUNDATION OF AMERICA – The Lupus Foundation of America today praised the results of a new long-term study for the treatment of lupus nephritis (lupus-related kidney disease) which demonstrated superiority of CellCept® (mycophenolate mofetil or MMF) to azathioprine (standard care) as a long-term treatment for lupus nephritis. The Phase III study results released by Vifor Pharma and Roche convincingly reached the primary endpoint of delaying treatment failure in patients with lupus nephritis who had successfully responded to induction therapy.
Responding to the release of data of the Aspreva Lupus Maintenance Study (ALMS), Sandra C. Raymond, President and CEO of the Lupus Foundation of America issued the following statement:
The results of this study provide more good news for the estimated 1.5 million Americans and the more than five million people worldwide who are living with lupus. Previous studies have provided convincing evidence that CellCept is better tolerated, and, more importantly to patients and their doctors, is associated with few serious or life-threatening infections and hospitalizations. It has been more than 51 years since the last drug was approved for lupus. We are greatly encouraged that people with lupus nephritis and their physicians will have additional options available to treat this potentially life-threatening and disabling complication of lupus.
The results of the study are significant because as many as forty percent of people with lupus will experience lupus kidney disease. The results of this study offer hope for an improved quality of life for these individuals. We look forward to reviewing data from the study when the company presents more details at the upcoming Ninth International Congress on Lupus, June 24-27 in Vancouver, Canada.
The Lupus Foundation of America is the nation’s foremost national voluntary health organization dedicated to finding the causes of and cure for lupus and providing support, services and hope to all people affected by lupus. The LFA conducts programs of research, education and advocacy through a national network of chapters, branches, and support groups. For more information about lupus, visit the LFA website at http://www.lupus.org/or call 800-558-0121 to receive a free information packet about lupus.