10 June 2015. An early-stage clinical trial is recruiting patients to test the safety of a treatment for severe gout that harnesses the immune system, but still avoids unwanted immune responses. The trial is conducted by the biotechnology company Selecta Biosciences at two sites in the U.S.: Altoona, Pennsylvania and Dallas, Texas.
Gout is a complex form of arthritis, marked by sudden and severe episodes of pain, with tenderness and redness in the joints, particularly at the base of the big toe. Men tend to be affected more than women, but women become more susceptible to gout after menopause. Gout occurs when uric acid builds up and forms needle-like crystals called tophi in the joints or surrounding tissue, causing the pain and inflammation. The company cites data estimating gout affecting 4.7 million people in the U.S.
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