Novartis' MS drug shows "significant effect" in early treatment

ZURICH, Oct 12 (Reuters) - Swiss drugmaker Novartis

said on Friday its multiple sclerosis drug Gilenyashowed "significant early effect" in reducing brain volume lossat six months, according to a new analysis of two late-stagestudies.

"With data showing an early treatment effect on relapses andbrain volume loss, Gilenya continues to show positive outcomesfor patients and Novartis remains committed to addressing thesignificant remaining unmet medical need in the MS community,"said David Epstein, Head of the Pharmaceuticals Division ofNovartis.

(Reporting by Caroline Copley)

((Caroline.Copley@thomsonreuters.com)(+41 58 306 7354)(ReutersMessaging: caroline.copley.thomsonreuters.com@reuters.net))