April 2 is World Autism Awareness Day – an opportunity to learn more about the disorder and to reiterate Servier’s commitment.
Autism, multiple development disorders
Autism spectrum disorder, more commonly known as autism, is the name for a complex group of developmental disorders which occur very early in children. Autism can be diagnosed by age two, and certain signs can be detected as early as the age of six months. Two main symptoms characterise this disease: social problems, including difficulty communicating, and so-called stereotyped or repetitive behaviours. The outer signs of autism are varied, differing from one individual to the next.
Today, 1 child in 160 is estimated to suffer from autism spectrum disorder. One person in 100 in the European Union is autistic, and 650,000 people in France are affected by the disease.
Servier commits to autism
In 2017, Servier committed to the fight against autism by joining forces with Neurochlore to accelerate the development and marketing of a treatment called bumetanide. This molecule could become the first medicine for the main symptoms of autism. Following promising Phase II results, two Phase III trials are about to be launched in Europe, and an application for marketing authorisation is to be submitted at the end of 2022.
As part of the Phase III trials and to gain a better understanding of patient needs, Servier has begun collaborating with patient associations. One such group, Autism Europe, plays a central role by addressing the general public and European decision-makers in order to build awareness and defend the rights of people with autism.