SGH selected for first-in-human clinical trial for new drug to treat lupus

Kho (fifth right) and others during the Open Day and Health Carnival at Cyberjaya College Kuching on April 20, 2024.

By DayakDaily Team

KUCHING, April 20: Sarawak General Hospital (SGH) was selected to conduct a first-in-human (FIH) clinical trial in Malaysia involving a new drug for the treatment of systemic lupus erythematosus in patients.

In a news report by TVS today, the political secretary to the Premier of Sarawak, Kho Teck Wan, said SGH was chosen by Roche Pharmaceuticals, one of the largest pharmaceutical companies in the world.

“This means we (Sarawak) need more experts in medicine,” she said when speaking at the Open Day and Health Carnival organised by Cyberjaya College Kuching today.

Kho represented Sarawak Deputy Premier Datuk Amar Dr Sim Kui Hian, who is also the Minister of Public Health, Housing, and Local Government.

She stated that the study under the rheumatology initiative is the first of its kind, specialising in research on safe treatments for patients with SLE.

Kho reiterated the Minister of Health (MOH), Datuk Seri Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad, who had previously said the selection as the study site is proof of the world’s leading multinational companies’ confidence in Malaysia’s ability in clinical research.

SLE is the most common type of lupus—an autoimmune disease in which the immune system attacks its tissues, causing widespread inflammation and tissue damage in the affected organs, which can affect the joints, skin, brain, lungs, kidneys, and blood vessels.

Meanwhile, touching on the issue of kidney disease, Kho said the Sarawak government had approved RM6.9 million for 399 applications under the Special Aid for Kidney Patients (BKPBP) from Jan 1, 2020 to Dec 31, 2023. — DayakDaily