Cold sores, which affect one in three Americans, may be effectively treated by a new immunotherapy process, as indicated by results of a 54-patient clinical trial at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston.
The patented therapy was developed by Squarex, LLC, of St. Paul.
About a third of people world-wide suffer a cold sore at some time each year. The sores, which can be painful and unsightly, have stubbornly resisted effective long-term treatment, and there is no FDA-approved drug or treatment for delaying or preventing cold sore outbreaks.
While further testing is underway to validate results, researchers say the clinical trial showed that a single topical application of the Squarex drug was significantly effective in reducing cold-sore recurrence for extended periods.
Patients in the clinical trial reported having at least six cold sore outbreaks over the previous 12 months before entering the clinical trial. After a single topical application of the drug, the time to next outbreak was tripled as compared to placebo: 40 days for the placebo group versus greater than 122 days for the group receiving the Squarex drug.
Dr. Maria Alora-Palli of Mass. General Hospital and Harvard Medical School is lead author of the scientific paper on the Squarex study, which appears in the current JAMA Dermatology.
Because the herpes simplex virus also causes genital herpes, Squarex President Dr. Hugh McTavish said his company would like to begin testing on the genital disease as well.
Squarex LLC is a privately held pharmaceutical development company.
(Source: PR Newswire)
Filed Under: Drug Discovery