SAN DIEGO, May 16, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- For the first time in history, people suffering from the deadly lung disease idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) will have access to a therapy. The Coalition for Pulmonary Fibrosis (CPF) commends the steps taken by the company, InterMune, Inc., to provide an Expanded Access Program (EAP) for the investigational drug, pirfenidone. The CPF represents thousands of patients suffering from the disease in the US that claims as many lives each year as breast cancer yet has limited awareness and recognition.
InterMune, Inc. announced today that the company will implement an EAP for pirfenidone. The EAP will be conducted under a treatment protocol limited to enrollment of IPF patients in the US who meet specific medical criteria.
To enroll in the EAP, a patient must be assessed by a physician who specializes in treating IPF and whose hospital or clinic center is participating in the EAP. The patient must also meet specific eligibility requirements. This means that not all physicians can provide access to pirfenidone through the EAP and not all patients who seek pirfenidone will be able to get access to it through EAP.
CPF encourages its patients with IPF to inquire about the EAP by calling InterMune Medical Information at 1-888-486-6411.
"The CPF is grateful to InterMune for its long-term commitment to the search for a PF treatment, and its willingness to extend the opportunity to access pirfenidone to an additional cohort of those who meet the enrollment requirements," said Mishka Michon, CEO of the CPF.
About Pulmonary Fibrosis (PF)
Pulmonary Fibrosis (PF) is a lung disorder characterized by a progressive scarring – known as fibrosis — and deterioration of the lungs, which slowly robs its victims of their ability to breathe. Approximately 200,000 Americans suffer from PF, and there is currently no known cause or cure. An estimated 48,000 new cases are diagnosed each year. PF is difficult to diagnose and an estimated two-thirds of patients die within five years of diagnosis. Sometimes PF can be linked to a particular cause, such as certain environmental exposures, chemotherapy or radiation therapy, residual infection, or autoimmune diseases such as scleroderma or rheumatoid arthritis. However, in many instances, no known cause can be established. When this is the case, it is called idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF).
About the CPF
The CPF is a 501C(3) nonprofit organization, founded in 2001 to accelerate research efforts leading to a cure for pulmonary fibrosis (PF), while educating, supporting, and advocating for the community of patients, families, and medical professionals fighting this disease. The CPF funds promising research into new approaches to treat and cure PF; provides patients and families with comprehensive education materials, resources, and hope; serves as a voice for national advocacy of PF issues; and works to improve awareness of PF in the medical community as well as the general public. The CPF's nonprofit partners include many of the most respected medical centers and healthcare organizations in the U.S. With more than 28,000 members nationwide, the CPF is the largest nonprofit organization in the U.S. dedicated to advocating for those with PF. For more information please visit www.coalitionforpf.org or call (888) 222-8541.
Source:Coalition for Pulmonary Fibrosis(CPF)