November 27, 2017
1 min read

MediciNova, VA partner to study MN-166 for methamphetamine addiction

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MediciNova Inc. recently announced a collaboration with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and Oregon Health & Science University to assess MN-166 for methamphetamine use disorder.

MN-166 (ibudilast, MediciNova Inc.) is an oral, small molecule phosphodiesterase-4 and -10 inhibitor and a macrophage migration inhibitory factor inhibitor that suppresses proinflammatory cytokines and promotes neurotrophic factors.

Ibudilast has been marketed in Japan and Korea for treatment of poststroke complications and bronchial asthma since 1989.

Antineuroinflammatory and neuroprotective effects of ibudilast were demonstrated in preclinical and clinical studies for drug use disorders, neurodegenerative disease such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and progressive multiple sclerosis, substance abuse, addiction and chronic neuropathic pain.

“We are pleased to partner with MediciNova to evaluate MN-166 in the treatment of methamphetamine use disorder,” study researcher William Hoffman, MD, PhD, of Oregon Health & Science University, said in a press release. “Methamphetamine induces neuroinflammation in animal models and in humans, and recent studies have shown MN-166 to have positive results in methamphetamine craving and favorable toxicology.”

To assess efficacy of ibudilast for methamphetamine use disorder, Hoffman and colleagues will conduct a double-blind, randomized, single-center outpatient pilot study among individuals with or without PTSD who recently stopped using methamphetamine.

Study participants (n = 28) will receive 50 mg of ibudilast or placebo twice a day for 4 weeks.

Safety and study medication adherence will be assessed at a week 1 visit, while a visit at day 30 will include laboratory tests, safety/medication adherence, and behavioral and cognitive questionnaires.

“We are excited to collaborate with Dr. Hoffman and Dr. Janowsky to explore the potential for MN-166 as a pharmacotherapy for methamphetamine use disorder,” Yuichi Iwaki, MD, PhD, president and CEO of MediciNova Inc., said in the release. “There is a large unmet medical need for patients with methamphetamine use disorder as there are no pharmaceutical treatments approved for this indication.”