Browse the tables to learn more about the drugs being developed for multiple sclerosis.
What does the drug development process involve?
The development of new drugs is a long and difficult process. Fewer than one or two compounds in 10,000 tested actually make it through to being licensed treatments with many being rejected on safety, efficacy or quality grounds.
On average it will take 10-15 years for a new compound to get from the test-tube into the medicine cabinet. It is important to remember that not all the treatments currently being developed or tested will receive a license or be approved for use in the NHS.
The first step in testing a new drug is to determine the safety of single doses in a small number of healthy volunteers.
If the treatment proves to be safe, studies begin to determine the effectiveness of the drug in people with the condition to be treated.
If a drug shows effectiveness, a larger study is conducted in hundreds of people.
Data from all of these three phases is presented to the regulatory authorities.
Once a new medicine has been licensed, drugs may need to be appraised by NICE for England and Wales and SMC for Scotland.
Last updated: January 2018
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