Frequently Asked Questions

Who are we?

Neuren Pharmaceuticals is a specialty biopharmaceutical company with a focus on rare, neurodevelopmental disorders. Our lead medicine, Trofinetide, showed strongly positive results in a Phase III study in Rett syndrome, meetings its co-primary endpoints and demonstrating statistically significant improvements over placebo. We now have NNZ-2591 is in Phase II trials for three disorders including Phelan-McDermid Syndrome.

Learn more about us at our website: www.neurenpharma.com.

What is a clinical trial?

Clinical Trials provide information to determine whether a medicine is safe and efficacious. Regulatory Agencies worldwide require the data from such clinical trials to assess a medicine’s benefit to the population being treated.

Clinical trials are carried out in humans after laboratory and animal testing demonstrates that a treatment is likely to be efficacious and safe. The trials move through a series of phases (I, II , III and IV), and follow protocols (approved by an IRB (Institutional Review Board) which is an independent committee established to review and approve research involving human subjects) that balance potential risks with benefits.

All participants in this study will receive thorough study-related physical, psychological, and behavioural evaluations by a study doctor.

While there is no guaranteed benefit to participants in a clinical research study, participation may help to advance scientific knowledge in the area that is being studied.

What is a Phase 2 clinical trial?

The phases of clinical trials are the stages where researchers conduct experiments to find out if a certain medicine or intervention is considered safe and efficacious as a new medical treatment. These range from Phase 1 to Phase 4. The image below summarises the four phases.

In Phase 2 studies like this, researchers administer the study medication to a group of patients who have the condition for which the medicine is being developed.

The next stage is Phase 3, where researchers will confirm the efficacy of the new treatment.

What is a study protocol?

A protocol details the specific instructions that Clinicians need to carry out the study. It is carefully designed to protect the wellbeing of the participants and answer specific research questions. A protocol explains who can participate in the trial, when different assessments should be taken, which procedures will be performed, details of medicine to be taken and how much to give, as well as information on the duration of the study. While participating in a clinical trial, participants are seen regularly by the study team to monitor their condition and determine the safety and efficacy of the treatment.

How can my child participate in this study?

Once a site has received IRB approval for the study, you will be able to contact them directly to discuss your child’s potential eligibility. They will arrange  a series of screening visits that will assess and confirm that your child meets all the eligibility criteria detailed in the protocol. These criteria are based on age, type of condition, medical history, concurrent medications and a range of clinical and behavioural assessments. If your child meets all these criteria, they will be eligible to participate in the study.

What does this Phelan-McDermid syndrome clinical trial involve?

The current study for children and adolescents with Phelan-McDermid syndrome is a Phase 2 trial. This trial will include up to 20 male and female participants between the ages of 3-12 years.

This Phase 2 study is intended to confirm that NNZ-2591 is a well-tolerated medicine that is worthy of further development for children and adolescents with Phelan-McDermid syndrome. This study is also measuring efficacy (whether individuals see improvement or benefit from taking the study drug). It includes a number of assessments that look at a number of areas of concern in Phelan-McDermid syndrome such as overall well-being, communication, behavior, and quality of life.

Your participation will last for approximately 19 weeks. During this time you will attend clinic on 5 occasions. There will also be 12 in-home visits where you will have a telehealth consultation with site staff who will ask questions on your child’s progress. At some of these in-home visits, you will also be supported by a visiting nurse who will carry out a number of assessments and take samples for analysis.

Does gene mutation/deletion affect eligibility?

To be eligible for the study, the participant must have a clinical diagnosis of Phelan-McDermid syndrome together with a documented disease-causing genetic abnormality of SHANK3.

What if my child has more than one genetic disorder?

Our main goal in this study is to examine the effectiveness of the new study medication (NNZ-2591) in the treatment of Phelan-McDermid syndrome. This means that if your child has been diagnosed with multiple genetic disorders, unfortunately they are unable to participate in this study. Many of these disorders have overlapping symptoms, and it would be impossible to accurately measure the effect of the study medication on the intended indication, in this case Phelan-McDermid syndrome. If you have specific questions or concerns, please speak with your study doctor.

Who will be taking blood samples from my child?

Blood samples will be taken by skilled study nurses who have extensive experience working with children who have neurodevelopmental disorders, specifically Phelan-McDermid syndrome.

How is the safety of the participant protected?

The ethical and legal codes that govern medical practice also apply to clinical research. Most clinical research is federally regulated with built in safeguards to protect the participants and their information. The trial follows a carefully controlled protocol, a study plan which details what researchers will do throughout the study. Safety data is reviewed by an independent group of clinical experts as the trial progresses. If you or your Dr believe your safety is at risk, you can withdraw from the study at any time. Researchers report the results of the trial at scientific meetings, to medical journals, and to various government agencies. At all times, individual participants' information will be de-identified to remain secret and will not be mentioned in any reports.

Can a participant leave a clinical trial after it has begun?

Yes, a participant can choose to withdraw from a clinical trial at any time. You should speak to the study team to let them know you no longer wish for the participant to continue in the trial.

If my child is responding well to the treatment, can I continue to have access the study medication?

Unfortunately, we’re unable to provide access to the study medication once your participation has ended. The medicine has not yet been studied (in either humans or animals) beyond 13 weeks of dosing, and so we would not have IRB approval to proceed beyond this timeframe.

Can we participate if we don’t live in any of the listed states?

Yes, you can participate in the study. Support for inter-state attendance at site is available.

Trial participation and clinic attendance during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Flexibility has been built into the study protocol and supporting structures to allow for continued subject participation during the Covid-19 pandemic. However, to ensure the integrity of the study, there are a number of study visits where it is critical that on site attendance occur.

Is support available to participate?

Yes, once confirmed as eligible,  support for attendance at in-clinic visits is available. Where required, you can be reimbursed for your reasonable travel and accommodation costs. The process will be managed by the PSMF and for more information please contact the PMFS on the following email .

How does the COVID-19 vaccine affect my child’s eligibility to participate?

Having the COVID-19 vaccine does not affect your child’s eligibility to participate in this study. Nor is it an issue if received part-way through the study. We’d advise having the vaccination ahead of participation in the trial to avoid any confusion in side effects. The study team will record any vaccines or medications that have been received during the treatment period.

Contact Us To Learn More

PMS Study Recruitment is now Closed.
Thank you to all the families who participated!