Researchers at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine have launched a clinical
The phase 1 clinical trial, which is recruiting 20 qualifying
participants, will evaluate suramin -- a century-old drug still used for
African sleeping sickness -- as a novel treatment for children with a
diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Previous published research
by Robert K. Naviaux, M.D., Ph.D., professor of medicine, pediatrics
and pathology at UC San Diego School of Medicine, and colleagues
reported that a single injection of suramin reversed symptoms of ASD in
This trial is the first to test suramin in children with ASD.
'Autism affects 1 to 2 percent of children in the United States,' said
Naviaux, co-director of the Mitochondrial and Metabolic Disease Center
at UC San Diego. 'Hundreds of genetic and environmental factors have
been shown to increase the risk of ASD, but treatment options for the
core symptoms are limited. To date, there are no medications that can
cure ASD, and very few that can improve its core symptoms.'
To participate in the study, a child must be a boy between the ages of
four to 17 years and have been diagnosed with ASD by a psychologist or
physician. He must be a resident of San Diego County and cannot have a
known genetic cause of mutation (such as Fragile X syndrome) or be
taking any prescription medications. He cannot have been hospitalized
within the last two months or be planning to begin any new medical
treatments during the time of the study. The study will involve 10 to 12
clinical visits over three to four months for each child.
All testing and treatment will occur in San Diego County. Participants
who complete the trial will be compensated for their time.
Read the whole story at Medical News Today