Treating OA With an Allergy Drug?

Arthritis Foundation-funded study looks at stopping osteoarthritis inflammation with an allergy medicine.  

A major subtype of osteoarthritis (OA) is known as post-traumatic OA, meaning the OA is initiated by a joint injury. This type of OA is scientifically important because it allows researchers to know the disease’s starting point.    

Cale Jacobs, PhD, of Mass General Brigham of Harvard Medical School, is the principal investigator on a two-center, randomized, placebo-controlled trial to test the drug montelukast (Singulair) in patients at risk for post-traumatic osteoarthritis (OA). The project is titled “Montelukast as a potential chondroprotective treatment following anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction,” or MOCHA. The scientific team will determine if this common allergy medication can control the inflammatory response to stop or slow the biochemistry of OA. Participants are currently being recruited.
Cale Jacobs, PhD, (right) and his extended family.
Photo courtesy of Dr. Jacobs.

“The Arthritis Foundation is proud to support this clinical trial because it actionably addresses key questions that the science community has been discussing for decades,” says Jason Kim, PhD, Vice President of Osteoarthritis Research Programs at the Arthritis Foundation.

The Arthritis Foundation has invested over $1.3M into the MOCHA Trial — one of the first projects of the Osteoarthritis Clinical Trial Network (OA-CTN) and an inspiration for the larger PIKASO Project. MOCHA is a predecessor of the PIKASO Project and established many of the ideas, concepts and techniques to be used in upcoming clinical trials supported by the Arthritis Foundation.

“This important research reinforces the Arthritis Foundation’s conviction that clinical trials are a critical pathway to developing evidence-based treatments in OA,” says Maria Vassileva, PhD, Senior Vice President of Science Strategy at the Arthritis Foundation.

Learn more about the science we fund and current funding opportunities.

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