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Experimental drug that injured UK volunteers resumes in human trials

BMJ 2015; 350 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.h1831 (Published 02 April 2015) Cite this as: BMJ 2015;350:h1831
  1. Owen Dyer
  1. 1Montreal

A phase II trial of an experimental drug that made headlines nine years ago when it caused horrific injuries to volunteers in a London trial is about to begin in Russia to evaluate it as a potential treatment for rheumatoid arthritis.

The drug, known as TGN1412, attained brief worldwide notoriety when six paid volunteers, all young men, were admitted to hospital for intensive care soon after being given what was believed to be a minute dose by a contract research organisation in Northwick Park Hospital, London.1 The men experienced a cytokine storm, an extreme autoimmune reaction leading to multiple organ failure. One lost his fingertips and toes to necrosis. …

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