New strategy to treat Cystic Fibrosis

In a study published in the journal Autophagy, the consortium of scientists from Italy, France and Scotland showed how the combination of two drugs reversed the key features of Cystic Fibrosis (CF) in a pilot phase 2 clinical trial featuring ten patients with the most common form of the disease. The research in Dundee has been supported by the Wellcome Trust since 1991, and initially by the UK Cystic Fibrosis Trust.

The candidate therapy involves an already licensed drug, Cysteamine that is given with a second drug epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG). Researchers found that the two drugs given together reduced inflammation in nine out of ten of the patients’ airways and also dramatically reduced the levels of salt in their sweat – a characteristic feature of CF that places a baby into CF therapy for life.

The researchers are now hoping to set up a large-scale trial to prove the drug combination’s effectiveness across an international CF population, which could lead to a completely new approach to therapy for the commonest form of CF.

Dr Anil Mehta, a clinical reader at Dundee’s Medical Research Institute, has been working on CF for more than 20 years and described the findings as an extremely encouraging first step.



See Jon Snow’s report for Channel 4 News –


Read the original story which was published on 11th November 2014.

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