Neurological disorders involve a set of conditions that predominantly affect the peripheral nerves, brain, and spinal cord. These disorders lead to severe health complications, thereby impacting a person’s quality of life. Some of these conditions can also be fatal if not diagnosed and treated on time. With widespread advancements in the medical research and healthcare delivery sectors, numerous diagnostic and treatment solutions targeting neurological disease have emerged over the years. Major pharmaceutical companies are playing a vital role in advancing research and development in this vertical.
In this blog, we will elaborate on the primary companies involved in this area and highlight a few noteworthy breakthroughs in neurological treatment landscape.
Pfizer: This global pharma leader is known for its immense contribution to the field of neurological medicines. Pfizer has successfully developed drugs like Lyrica (pregabalin) for neuropathic pain and Xeljanz (tofacitinib) for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis, which has also showcased remarkable success in treating neurological conditions like multiple sclerosis.
Biogen: This pharmaceutical giant has been involved in neurology research with its prime focus on neurodegenerative illnesses. In 2021, the FDA approved its breakthrough medication, Aduhelm (aducanumab) for the treatment of Alzheimer’s Disease.
Novartis: This pharma company has been making extensive efforts in the development of effective neurological drugs. Novartis can be credited for its breakthrough medications, i.e., Gilenya (fingolimod), a medication for multiple sclerosis, and Aimovig (erenumab), a novel treatment for migraines.
Eisai: Eisai has been contributing in the field of epilepsy treatment with the development of medications like Fycompa (perampanel). Apart from this drug, the company has significantly expedited its R&D activities with an aim to develop more advanced and reliable medications for the treatment of epilepsy.
Teva Pharmaceuticals: Teva has emerged as a key player in the production of generic neurological medications. It is known for developing affordable generic drugs to treat neurological ailments such as Parkinson's disease, epilepsy, and migraine, among others.
Targeted immunotherapies: These therapies have shown immense potential in the treatment of auto-immune neurological conditions such as myasthenia gravis and multiple sclerosis. Targeted immunotherapy solutions leverage the power of the body’s immune system to slow down the disease progression. Rituximab and Ocrelizumab (Ocrevus) are two of the prominent targeted immunotherapy drugs which are showcasing remarkable success in the treatment of neurological disorders.
Gene Therapies: Gene therapy can be regarded as one of the promising breakthroughs in the neurological disorder treatment vertical. Companies like Biogen and Novartis are working tireless to develop treatments that target the underlying genetic causes of conditions such as spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) and certain types of inherited neuropathies.
Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS): DBS is a process in which electrodes are implanted into special areas of the brain via surgery. These electrodes are further connected with a pulse generator post which electric impulses are sent in the target brain region. It is typically used to manage conditions like Parkinson's disease, essential tremor, and epilepsy, offering patients a more precise and effective treatment option.
Neuroinflammation Modulators: Neuroinflammation modulators are drugs or other medical procedures that can control or modify the inflammatory processes taking place in the brain. These modulators are crucial in the treatment of a variety of neurological disorders and diseases. These drugs or treatments are designed to target and control inflammatory reactions in the nervous system in an effort to reduce symptoms, halt the progression of the disease, or perhaps even have neuroprotective effects for people with neurological disorders. Advancements in understanding the role of neuroinflammation in neurological disorders have led to the development of drugs like Siponimod (Mayzent), which modulate the immune response in conditions like multiple sclerosis.
Neurological disorders have become highly prevalent across the globe. This has created a huge demand for effective diagnostic and treatment solutions. Pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies are playing a significant role in bringing about rapid transformation in this vertical by pioneering in the development of neurology drugs and therapies. The advent of ground breaking treatment solutions including in gene therapies, deep brain stimulation, immunotherapies, and novel drug classes has offered hope to millions of individuals living with neurological disorders. As research continues to progress, it is likely that more innovative treatments will emerge, ultimately improving the lives of those affected by these challenging conditions.