Another promising NASH trial result from Galmed

On the heels of competitor Madrigal’s excellent trial results another small BioPharma company has released phase 2 results that sent their company stock skyrocketing.  Galmed Pharmaceuticals, a small Israeli biopharmaceutical company, produced statistically significant results with a drug called Aramchol in the lowering of fat in the liver at 52 weeks.  The analysis of the results was embraced by the markets, which sent the stock soaring 250%.

In one endpoint, more patients treated with 600 mg of Aramchol versus placebo achieved NASH resolution without worsening of fibrosis, at 16.7% versus 5.0% (p=0.0514), respectively, as well as NASH resolution more generally, at 19.2% compared to 7.5% (p=0.0462). In addition, the second biopsy endpoint showed a higher proportion of patients with at least a one-point improvement in fibrosis score without worsening of NASH.

We are at an exciting time for NASH treatment options with multiple companies pursuing promising candidates.  People suffering from NASH will still require significant lifestyle changes but hearing about more successful trial results is a very positive step towards getting a grip on the pandemic.

Coffee Once Again Linked to Healthier Livers

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“Coffee drinkers may be at lower risk for liver disease”.

There have been many studies released in recent years linking the consumption of coffee with healthier livers.  Now another large study has been released from the American Society for Nutrition, as summarized on WebMD.  3 cups or more of Joe per day was tied to a 21% reduction in liver risk, even after accounting for all sorts of variables. Continue reading “Coffee Once Again Linked to Healthier Livers”

My speech for International NASH Day

Today I had the pleasure of meeting a fantastic group of medical professionals that are all working hard on solving the NASH pandemic as part of International NASH Day’s worldwide efforts to fight the disease.  I’ll be blogging much more about what I learned and hopefully will be able to follow up with some interesting pieces from some of the great people I met today.

Below are the prepared remarks for this speech…you can also click here to view the livestream.

Continue reading “My speech for International NASH Day”

NASH AWARE will be at the 1st International NASH Day Conference in the Bronx!

I’m proud to announce that I’ll be joining a very distinguished list of individuals speaking at the 1st International NASH Day Conference for Providers at the Einstein College of Medicine in the Bronx next Tuesday!

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The terrific folks at The NASH Education Program have worked with providers and advocates across the industry to organize this worldwide day of action to raise awareness for NASH.  They have asked me to tell my personal story to help provide the perspective of someone who has dealt with loss due to NASH.

I’m truly honored to be a part of this fantastic event.  For full information see the PDF here.

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Madrigal NASH trials exceed expectations

Today was a much anticipated date in the search for the first medical treatment for NASH.  Madrigal Pharmaceuticals, a Pennsylvania-based Bio-Pharma company, has been running clinical trials with its NASH candidate MGL-3196, and was due to announce the preliminary results of those trials.

And the results blew away all expectations according to Bloomberg, leading to a 140% gain in the companies stock.   Continue reading “Madrigal NASH trials exceed expectations”

Study: Over HALF of all Americans to be obese by 2045

Today is the start of the 2018 European Congress on Obesity, an annual multi-day gathering of experts from all over the world that deals with the topic of obesity.  And in the initial keynotes some absolutely mind-blowing projections were presented.

In the United States, the researchers found obesity will increase from 39 percent of the population in 2017 to 55 percent in 2045, and diabetes from 14 percent to 18 percent.

In Britain, the proportion will swell from 32 percent to 48 percent, with the incidence of diabetes rising from 10.2 percent to 12.6 percent.

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Additionally, they project that over 22% of the entire world population will be obese in the same time-frame.

There is sure to be a lot more information presented at this Congress and I will be watching carefully for any information related to NASH to share here.

NASH cases projected to increase 63% by 2030

From Medscape comes an informative article about the growing problem of NAFLD & NASH.  The article presents the troubling projections in the growth of non-alcoholic liver diseases in the USA.

The current worldwide prevalence of NAFLD is approaching 25%.[7] The prevalence of NAFLD in the United States is increasing, owing to a rising incidence of obesity and type 2 diabetes mellitus.[8,9] Current US projections indicate a 21% increase in NAFLD numbers, leading to a 33.5% overall prevalence by 2030. Coupled with a 63% increase in patients with nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH),[9] there will be a 168% increase in the number of patients with decompensated end-stage liver disease, and a 137% increase in the numbers of patients developing HCC from NAFLD. The growing numbers of NAFLD patients with hepatic fibrosis[8] indicate that end-stage liver disease from NAFLD will probably become the most common reason for liver transplantation in the United States.[10]

The rest of the article talks about and summarizes all of the useful information available, from lean NASH to treatment options, and includes updated guidance from AASLD (American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases).

Check out the entire article.

NASH Isn’t Just For Obese People

Surprisingly High Cases of “Lean NASH”

While there is a clear causal relationship between obesity, NAFLD, and NASH, studies have shown that there are a significant number of cases of NASH affecting non-obese individuals.  In a recent study up to 15% of those diagnosed with NASH were not considered obese.  These cases are referred to as lean NASH or NOSH (non-obese steatohepatitis).

And there is a real concern for these types of cases because apparently these variations of the disease can have even higher mortality and serious morbidity rates.  Read simply; if you are not obese and get diagnosed with NASH you have an even greater risk of serious life-threatening symptoms.  Continue reading “NASH Isn’t Just For Obese People”

Police Chief Diagnosed With NASH Announces He Needs a Liver Transplant and Receives Outpouring of Support

In an all too familiar story, a police chief in Oak Park Illinois has suddenly found himself needing a liver transplant after being diagnosed with NASH just a few weeks ago.  In an amazing show of support, several potential live donors have already come forward after a social media post went viral in the community. Continue reading “Police Chief Diagnosed With NASH Announces He Needs a Liver Transplant and Receives Outpouring of Support”

Lipotoxicity and NASH

This is a fascinating article full of technical detail about an emerging alternative thesis explaining the progression from NAFLD to NASH.  It also goes into detail about how biopharma company Gilead is pursuing multiple avenues and theories on NASH progression as part of a comprehensive plan to create a medical treatment for it. Continue reading “Lipotoxicity and NASH”