Canada Approves NIOX MINO for Asthma Monitoring
SOLNA, Sweden – 3 September 2009 – Aerocrine AB today announced that Health Canada’s Therapeutic Products Directorate has approved Aerocrine’s NIOX MINO® technology for use in treating asthma. Canada’s National Health Service may now begin using the NIOX MINO, a medical device that provides a measure of the degree of inflammation in the airways in a single breath.
“This is a significant milestone for Canadians living with asthma. Measuring and controlling airway inflammation may contribute to improved diagnosis, treatment and disease control,” says Chip Neff, President of Aerocrine Inc. Asthma is a chronic condition characterized by an inflammation present in the airways of the lungs. The more inflamed the airway, the more sensitive the airway becomes, which leads to symptoms such as breathing difficulty. While the inflammation is the underlying cause of asthma symptoms, it has not been possible to measure in routine clinical practice. Instead, diagnosis and treatment are typically based on the patient’s symptoms and lung function. The founders of Aerocrine made the original discovery that nitric oxide in exhaled breath is elevated in patients with asthma and the company has since pioneered the development of the method to monitor airway inflammation by measuring exhaled nitric oxide (eNO). To date, more than 2.5 million patient tests have been performed across the world using Aerocrine’s systems. According to the Asthma Society of Canada, asthma afflicts some three million Canadians including twelve percent of Canadian children. The prevalence of asthma has increased over the last twenty years and it is the leading cause of absenteeism from school and the third leading cause of work loss. Asthma is also responsible for ten deaths per week, most of which could be prevented. Economically, over twelve billion dollars a year is spent on asthma in Canada. “Aerocrine’s method to help better control asthma continues to gain acceptance across the world through regulatory approvals, inclusions in clinical guidelines and health insurance systems”, says Paul de Potocki, CEO of Aerocrine AB. “We are excited about this possibility to offer our company’s technology also to people living with asthma in Canada”.