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FDA approves drug for auto-inflammatory disease


ROCKVILLE, Md. The Food and Drug Administration has approved a new biotech drug for treating a chronic inflammatory disease.

The FDA announced Thursday the approval of Novartis’ Ilaris (canakinumab) for the treatment of cryopyrin associated periodic syndrome in children and adults. The hereditary disease, for which limited treatments exist, includes such rare, but life-long and debilitating, symptoms as fatigue, headaches and, in the long term, deafness, bone deformities, nervous system damage and death.

“Until now, treatments for CAPS patients have been limited to traditional inflammatory-disease medications that work by suppressing the entire immune system, and newer therapies that control the disease better but require more frequent injections,” University of California San Diego professor of pediatrics and medicine Hal Hoffman said in a Novartis statement.

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