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NeuroSigma receives Class 2 medical device license for Monarch eTNS System from Health Canada


The eTNS features replaceable patches for the forehead that are worn primarily at night.

NeuroSigma, Inc., a California-based medical device company, today announced that it has received a Class 2 medical device license for its Monarch™ eTNS™ (external trigeminal nerve stimulation) System from Health Canada. The license covers the use of the Monarch eTNS System for treatment of drug-resistant epilepsy (DRE), major depressive disorder (MDD), and treatment-resistant depression.

The Monarch, CE Mark approved in the European Union in 2012, but not yet approved in the United States (US), is now available to patients in Canada. Drug resistant epilepsy (DRE) is a serious medical disorder, and affects approximately 30% of all patients with epilepsy.  Major depressive disorder is a prevalent condition, affecting up to 16% of the population at some point during their lives.

The device, containing electrodes that send tiny pulses to the brain, has been found by US doctors to cut the number of seizures and heighten a patient’s mood.

The patch, or external Trigeminal Nerve Stimulation (eTNS) system, is attached to a small stimulator worn around the waist. Its tiny pulses target the major branches of the trigeminal nerve, which lies close to the skin on the forehead and which is thought to connect to parts of the brain involved in epileptic seizures. The nerve is also believed to help regulate a person’s mood.

In the most recent study, carried out in 2010 and involving 50 adults whose epilepsy was not controlled by drugs, more than 40 per cent experienced a reduction in symptoms, compared to less than 16 per cent who received a placebo treatment.

“We also noted that eTNS caused a significant improvement in mood,” says Christopher DeGiorgio, professor of neurology at the University of California in Los Angeles, who has led the research on eTNS.

The Health Canada approval was supported by years of safety and efficacy data generated in Phase I and Phase II clinical trials in the US, in which the therapy was shown to substantially reduce seizure frequency and significantly improve mood.Results from a Phase II Randomized Controlled Trial of eTNS for epilepsy were published online in the January 26, 2013 issue of Neurology®, the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology.  The clinical trial enrolled 50 patients, and was conducted at the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) and the University of Southern California (USC). After 18 weeks of eTNS therapy, 40.5% of patients in the treatment group had a reduction in seizures of at least 50%. In addition to clinical trials in epilepsy, NeuroSigma has funded clinical trials at UCLA for the treatment of major depression, PTSD and ADHD.

The Monarch eTNS System will be sold by prescription in Canada to patients under physician supervision.  The system is composed of an external pulse generator and disposable external electric patches placed on the forehead that are replaced daily. The patches are worn primarily in the evening while asleep.

“We are very pleased to have received the license from Health Canada,” said Leon Ekchian, Ph.D., President and CEO of NeuroSigma.  “It is another major milestone for NeuroSigma in the commercialization of trigeminal nerve stimulation and enables us to work with a new physician population and their patients.  We are committed to making eTNS affordable and available worldwide.”

“I am delighted as an inventor that this therapy is now available to physicians and patients in Canada,” added Christopher DeGiorgio , M.D., Vice President of Neurology and Professor of Neurology at UCLA. “In the United States, we have completed our pre-IDE meeting with the FDA and are preparing our IDE submission to commence a multi-center pivotal trial of eTNS for epilepsy.  Over twenty-five major epilepsy centers have expressed strong interest in being part of this trial.”

“As a psychiatrist, I’m excited to see that this new treatment paradigm will be available to physicians in Canada to address the unmet needs for their patients withdepression,” added Ian Cook , M.D., Director of the UCLA Depression Research & Clinic Program and Senior Medical Advisor to NeuroSigma.

SOURCE NeuroSigma, Inc. – Read More: http://www.news-medical.net/news/20130502/NeuroSigma-receives-Class-2-medical-device-license-for-Monarch-eTNS-System-from-Health-Canada.aspx

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1 Comment

  1. We here in the US like to think we’re an innovative country but when it comes to epilepsy, we fall face first. Most devices, medications and therapies are approved and used in other countries long before the US approves. I was told by my son’s neuro that it’s all about money here in the US. Really stinks that helping people takes a back burner because something may not be a money maker. I hope this device is approved for the US soon. It could help so many people.

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