Century-old drug tested in boys with autism.
By UC San Diego Health and others on SoundCloud
In a small, clinical trial, a single dose of the drug suramin produced measurable, but transient, improvements in five boys with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Here, lead researcher Robert K. Naviaux, MD, PhD, talks with Miles McInerney, a teenager with ASD who was involved in the study but did not receive suramin, and his mother, Kim Kennedy. They discuss the trial, why Miles wanted to participate, and his concerns about changing what makes him who he is. (Suramin is a 100-year-old drug developed to treat African sleeping sickness. It is not approved for any therapeutic use in the U.S. This trial was only intended to test the drug’s safety. Larger, longer clinical trials are needed to assess suramin or similar drugs as an ASD treatment.