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MediciNova Inc. up 30 Percent on Positive Phase I Trial Data

Shares of MediciNova Inc. (NASDAQ: MNOV) were up more than 30 percent in Wednesday trading after the company presented positive and significant Phase Ib trial data for its experimental compound, MN-166 (ibudilast).

MN-166 is being tested on methamphetamine addicts, a substance known to be highly toxic to the body. It causes rapid heart rate, irregular heartbeat, and increased blood pressure and body temperature. Long-term use can lead to memory loss, aggression, psychotic behavior, heart damage, malnutrition and severe dental problems, according to the press release.

The drug is believed to block the inflammation of the

According to Steven Shoptaw, Ph.D., Professor, UCLA Departments of Family Medicine and Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences, “MN-166 may act by reducing methamphetamine’s neurotoxic inflammation and attenuating other actions contributing to dependence.”

“MN-166 is a novel and exciting approach to treating drug addiction,” said co-investigator Keith Heinzerling, M.D., Assistant Professor, UCLA Department of Family Medicine, Medical Director, UCLA Center for Behavioral and Addiction Medicine. “We look forward to initiating later this summer a National Institute on Drug Abuse-funded Phase 2 trial of MN-166 for methamphetamine dependence.”

The stock was up 31.03 percent to close at $3.37

Disclosure: At the time of this writing, the author had no position in the equities mentioned.

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