Ruth Mitchell

Local company delivers for Cambridge

A Northumberland pharmaceutical company is hoping that its work will help to combat rheumatoid arthritis after the completion of a clinical trial involving the University of Cambridge.

SCM Pharma, based in Prudhoe, has completed a three-year product supply programme with the University’s Department of Clinical Medicine.

The charity-funded clinical study is being undertaken at Addenbrooke’s NHS hospital, a Cambridge-based hospital that recently hit the national headlines for a high-profile research project that has led to a potential cure for nut allergies in children.

It is though about 1% of the world’s population is affected by rheumatoid arthritis, women three times more often than men. Onset of the disease is most frequent in people 40 to 50 years old, but no age is immune.

SCM’s role involved initial consultancy with the University, followed by creation of an active tablet of differing strengths and a placebo required for the clinical trial.

Frances C. Hall, university lecturer and honorary consultant in rheumatology, said: “SCM were very insightful, professional and helpful from start to finish. Even when the project required some changes, they were able to guide us through the process, while being flexible to adapt to the new project requirements.”

The studies are now successfully well underway with around 60 patients initially involved in the trial, with the hope that the drug, lisinopril, will be able to help patients with this inflammatory type of joint disease.

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