top of page

Nrf2 and Multiple Sclerosis

Benefits of Nrf2:
  • Reduction or slowdown of scar tissue creation. NRF2 activation has been shown to reduce fibrosis in the body.

  • Increased production of protective antioxidant and detoxication enzymes

  • Nrf2 can modulate an autoimmune neuroinflammatory response

  • A study published in Pharmacogenomics Journal (June 2012) showed NRF2 treatment worked best when consistently applied as opposed to once off “boost” treatments.

  • Production of antioxidant genes regulate inflammatory cytokines and endogenous anti-oxidants which are variables affecting disease progression in multiple sclerosis (MS). In addition they exert neuroprotective effects directly.(See Sci Rep. 2011;1:201. Epub 2011 Dec 19)

What Tecfidera Tells Us About the Size of the NRF2 Medical and Supplementation Market

According to an article published by Foxnews entitled ” FDA approves new oral MS drug, Tecfidera” the following information reveals just how big the market is for NRF2 activating medications and supplements. Tecfidera has been FDA approved to treat just one disease, Multiple Sclerosis. From studies published on, NRF2 deficiencies is potentially tied to hundreds of additional diseases and illnesses. The statistics and market impact mentioned in this article is a “drop in the bucket” when it comes to the entire potential for the NRF2 activator industry.

Biogen is expected to become the largest oral treatment for MS with annual sales exceeding $3-Billion within the next 5 years according to data compiled by Thomson Reuters Cortellis Multiple sclerosis affects more than 2.1 million people globally. The share price of Biogen, producer of Tecfidera have tripled over the past three years upon the hope that this drug would be a big money producer for the company. There is a huge demand for oral based medication compared to the injected alternative.

European and US approval of Tecfidera has significantly increased the odds of Biogen meeting its revenue goals. According to Businessweek, “Biogen Idec Inc. (Nasdaq: BIIB) charges $54,900 a year for Tecfidera, its new and promising treatment for multiple sclerosis, and a rival of Teva Pharmaceutical Industries’ (NYSE: TEVA; TASE: TEVA) Copaxone. The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved Tecfidera for sale last week, and analysts believe that it will become the market leader within a few years.”

Tecfidera (BG-12) NRF2 Activator Approved by FDA for Multiple Sclerosis (MS) Treatment
by GLEN THOMSON – NRF2.COM on MARCH 28, 2013

Although there is no treatment that will cure Multiple Sclerosis, there are three oral medications approved by the FDA to be a first-line treatment to slow down the progression of the disease.

Dimethyl Fumarate (Tecfidera, Biogen Idec) joins fingolimod (Gilenya) and teriflunomide (Aubagio) as the new “kid on the block”. It is specifically approved for adults with relapsing-remitting Multiple Sclerosis.

Dimethyl fumarate is a drug that activates the nuclear factor-like2 (Nrf2) pathway. The study of NRF2 is a relatively new approach to lowering oxidative stress which is associated with hundreds of disease states (not just MS).

Tecfidera lowered MS relapses and lesions on the brain as well as worsening of the disability compared to the placebo group.

Dimethyl fumarate reduced the percentage of patients who experienced relapses 44% to 53% as measured by the Expanded Disability Status Scale (EDSS)

Biogen Idec MA, Cambridge, Mass., has been assigned a patent (8,399,514) for the “treatment for multiple sclerosis.”

The following abstract from the patent document states: “Provided are certain methods of screening, identifying, and evaluating neuroprotective compounds useful for treatment of neurological diseases, such as, e.g., multiple sclerosis (MS). The compounds described upregulate the cellular cytoprotective pathway regulated by Nrf2. Also provided are certain methods of utilizing such compounds in therapy for neurological disease, particularly, for slowing or reducing demyelination, axonal loss, or neuronal and oligodendrocyte death.”

Multiple Sclerosis: Tecfidera (BG-12), tBHQ, SFN and Protandim Compared

This post updates the previous post to include findings from a paper presented to 5th Joint triennial congress of the European and Americas Committees for Treatment and Research in Multiple Sclerosis (Amsterdam, The Netherlands 2011)

The study by J. Lim, S. van der Pol, J. Drexhage, E. de Vries, J. van Horssen (Amsterdam, NL) investigates the potential that four different Nrf2 activators (BG-12, tBHQ, SFN and protandim) had to boost antioxidant enzyme expression in oligodendrocytes and protect them from reactive oxygen species (ROS)-mediated cell death.

To quote from the summary, “BG-12, tBHQ, SFN and protandim are well-tolerated and strongly induce Nrf2-driven antioxidant enzyme production in oligodendrocytes, with protandim showing the most potent induction.”

*Information provided on this site is for educational purposes only. Do your own research, and consult with a medical professional about your findings. “Nrf2 activator” is a dietary supplement, not a drug. We do not promote or intend to imply or represent that it can prevent, cure, treat or mitigate any disease or class of disease. “Nrf2 activator” is not intended to be an alternative or replacement for any drug or biological product.

bottom of page