Is the world flat?
The INSPIRE trial set out to investigate one of these following an anecdote that a person, who had MS but was treated with HIV-inhibiting treatment, did well.
Was this a fluke or the beginning of a new era in MS research?
You know the answer. Yep, the trial was not a success.
This study looked at raltegravir, rather than looking at HAART, which is a cocktail of drugs used to inhibit HIV.
Why? Because a company making raltegravir sponsored the study.
However, raltegravir is an integrase inhibitor. This means it aims to stop virus integrating into the host’s genome to cause infection.
This is what HIV does to infect.
However for a human endogenous retrovirus, the virus integrated probably a few thousand years ago. Other viruses may not integrate. Therefore would raltegravir be the most logical choice of an anti-viral? Perhaps not.
So whilst the trial failed it does not say the idea of a viral cause of MS is dead.
The paper is available to download and read.
A phase II baseline versus treatment study to determine the efficacy of
Raltegravir (Isentress) in preventing progression of relapsing remitting
multiple sclerosis as determined by gadolinium-enhanced MRI:
Julian Gold, Monica Marta, Ute C. Meier, Tove Christensen, David Miller, Daniel Altmann
David Holden, Lucia Bianchi, Rocco Adiutori, David MacManus, Tarek Yousry, Klaus Schmierer
Benjamin Turner, Gavin Giovannoni
The INSPIRE Study is now available online, containing full bibliographic details: https://authors.elsevier.com/a/1XLbE7skoexazW
CoA: This is work by the ProfGs and other members of the team. This is disappointing, but if you don’t try you can’t fail, although importantly you can never succeed.