Medical City Fort Worth August 03, 2015

Fort Worth, Texas (July 31, 2015) – A new type of cholesterol-lowering treatment is especially significant for a group of Fort Worth medical researchers and their patients.

Medical City Fort Worth's research team has worked for two years in the Odyssey clinical trial program evaluating Praluent® (alirocumab) injections. This is the first cholesterol-lowering treatment recently FDA approved in a new class of drugs known as proprotein convertase subtilisin kexin type 9 (PCSK9) inhibitors.

Evalyn Fox of Weatherford is among the heart patients participating in the clinical trial. She has survived three heart attacks.

“If they can learn something that will help others, that is great,” Fox said. “And I’m being helped at the same time.”

Praluent targets a specific protein, called PCSK9, which interferes with the liver’s ability to remove cholesterol from the blood. Praluent drives down levels of LDL cholesterol, considered the dangerous kind. Experts believe Praluent might offer an important alternative for patients at risk of heart disease, especially those who can’t tolerate statin medications.

“We are very excited that our qualitative work has contributed to the FDA’s approval of this new treatment option,” Medical City Fort Worth Research Office Supervisor Dr. Rubina Muzina said. “This cutting-edge research can provide innovative medicine and bring meaningful value for our patients.”

The Plaza research team is continuing research on Praluent’s use, including expanding indications for who might benefit from it. Volunteers are currently being recruited to join the current phase of the Odyssey study at MCFW. This is one of 10 different studies currently running in Plaza’s research office, focused mainly on cardiovascular, electrophysiology and neurological medicine. To learn more about volunteering for a research study at Plaza, phone (817) 347-6058.

Plaza’s principal research investigator is Dr. Amir Malik, assisted by sub-investigators Dr. Farhan Ali, Dr. Dennis Doan, Dr. Giri Mundluru and Dr. Ashesh Parikh, and by physicians in Plaza’s cardiology fellowship program.

About Medical City Fort Worth

Medical City Fort Worth, located in the heart of Fort Worth’s medical district, is a 320-bed facility offering comprehensive diagnostic and treatment services in a wide range of specialties and subspecialties, including cardiac care, neurosciences, oncology, orthopedics and kidney transplant surgery. Medical City Fort WOrth is part of Medical City Healthcare, one of the region’s largest, most comprehensive health care providers.