When he was diagnosed with relapsing multiple sclerosis (MS) on his 19th birthday, Dov was confused and afraid. He did not know what MS was and did not know what his future held.
“I thought I would be disabled in a few years’ time,” he said. After he was diagnosed, Dov suffered from severe symptoms from his MS. “I did not move out of bed; my whole body was paralyzed.”
Above: Dov, Multiple Sclerosis, Israel
Following his diagnosis, Dov was hospitalized and required support for basic activities such as changing the channel on the television, cutting up his food, and using the restroom.
Now, two years later, Dov has recovered from his relapse and is traveling and running with friends to raise money for the MS community. “I feel just like [my friends]. That’s really the sweetest gift I received.”
“It is the stories of people like Dov that inspire the work we do every day,” said Tom Snow, Global Head of Multiple Sclerosis at Sanofi Genzyme, the specialty care business of Sanofi. “After more than 10 years of dedication to the MS community, we continue to push ourselves to advance care for people living with this challenging disease.”
MS is a chronic disease that affects more than 2.3 million people worldwide. The disease affects each person differently, with symptoms ranging from numbness in the limbs or forgetfulness to paralysis or loss of vision. MS is caused when the body’s immune system attacks the central nervous system. Treatment can alter the course of the disease.
Sanofi launched the first of its two treatments for relapsing MS in 2012, and the significant growth of our MS franchise has been built on a strong foundation of long-term partnerships with patients, physicians, advocates and researchers.
We continue to launch our existing products in additional countries, with nine launches planned in 2019 in emerging markets. More than 123,000 people around the world are currently being treated with a Sanofi MS product.
In addition to expanding access to our existing portfolio, we are continuing our research and development efforts, focused in areas where we believe we have the strongest potential to help patients in need.
In collaboration with Principia Biopharma, we are developing a Bruton’s tyrosine kinase (BTK) inhibitor that is currently in Phase 2 development. BTK is an enzyme that is involved in inflammatory processes, and inhibiting BTK may decrease inflammation that is associated with MS in the peripheral and central nervous system.
In addition, in 2018 we announced a collaboration with Denali Therapeutics that includes a small molecule with the potential to treat MS, as well as other neurologic diseases. Our R&D pipeline also includes early-stage programs focused on preventing and repairing the damage to the central nervous system caused by MS.
We recognize the significant impact multiple sclerosis can have on the lives of patients like Dov and the people who care for them, which is why we remain focused on identifying new treatment options for people living with MS all over the world.