It was announced today that Roche has taken the difficult decision of ending the development of neuro-protective compound Olesoxime.
In 2016 Roche started the OLEOS study, an open label extension study evaluating the long term safety and effectiveness of olesoxime. Many discussions with Health Authorities (FDA and EMA) and SMA experts were had and the company worked hard to improve the dose and formulation of olesoxime and to design the best Phase 3 study possible to be able to show the efficacy of olesoxime.
Furthermore, they regularly analysed the data from this study. Whilst the data at 12 months of treatment with olesoxime were initially encouraging, the most recent analysis at 18 months, which was presented at the American Academy of Neurology in April 2018, actually showed a worsening in motor function.
Unfortunately, despite all of their efforts and a strong desire to deliver olesoxime as a medicine to people with SMA, Roche has concluded that this is not going to be possible. Based on all of the available evidence and the continued difficulties described above, the company has decided to stop further development of olesoxime.
Many of you will be very disappointed by this news, as we are too. Their immediate priority now is to ensure that those still taking part in the ongoing OLEOS study understand what this decision means for them and that they are provided with appropriate treatment options. Roche is working closely with study sites and investigators to help identify options for those still taking part in the OLEOS study and will share more details about this in the coming weeks. The OLEOS study will be kept open until all ongoing participants have an alternative treatment option confirmed.