Yahoo News
Monday April 20, 2009

This past weekend, Biogen Idec, Inc. (NasdaqGS: BIIB - News) reported that another patient taking Tysabri had developed a case of progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy, or PML.

This is the sixth case of PML since July 2008. In the most recent case, a patient being treated for multiple sclerosis on Tysabri developed the disease after 31 months. All patients are taking Tysabri as a monotherapy, with the minimum therapy before noted disease of 12 months. The average length of time for the sixth patients dosing is 19 months. Five of the six reported cases were located outside the U.S.

Despite the new case of PML, Biogen Idec and Elan continue to educate and train physicians under the risk management plan (RiskMAP). This includes the recent warning on potential liver damage as well. As of the end of the first quarter, there are currently 39,900 patients on Tysabri worldwide (20,800 in the U.S, 18,500 Ex-U.S, 600 in clinical trials).

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