2015 Update: The Foundation for Peripheral Neuropathy in their E News March 2015, noted in a follow up of a 2013 research report published in the Annals of Clinical and Translational Neurology and Science Daily, possible neuropathy pain relief for diabetics stating “two low dose rounds of non-viral gene therapy called VM 202 patients had significant improvement of their pain that lasted for months.”
“Those who received the therapy reported more than 50 percent reduction in their symptoms and virtually no side effects,” said Dr. Jack Kessler, lead author of the study. “Not only did it improve their pain, it also improved their ability to perceive a very, very light touch.”
VM202 contains human hepatocyte growth factor (HGF) gene. Growth factor is a naturally occurring protein in the body that acts on cells, in this case nerve cells – to keep them alive, healthy and functioning. Future study is needed to investigate if the therapy can actually regenerate damaged nerves, reversing the neuropathy.
Patients with painful diabetic neuropathy have abnormally high levels of glucose in their blood. These high levels of glucose can be toxic.
“We are hoping that the treatment will increase the local production of hepatocyte growth factor to help regenerate nerves and grow new blood vessels and therefore reduce the pain,” said Dr. Senda Ajroud-Driss, associate professor in neurology at Feinberg, an attending physician at Northwestern Memorial Hospital and an author of the study.
“Right now there is no medication that can reverse neuropathy,” Kessler said. “Our goal is to develop a treatment. If we can show with more patients that is a very real phenomenon, then we can show we have not only improved the symptoms of the disease, namely the pain, but we have actually improved function.”
A future, much larger phase three study will soon be underway. Click here to read the full article “Neuropathy: Relief for diabetics with painful condition” on ScienceDaily.com