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Opening the Door for More NASH Patients


In this Pharmaceutical Executive video interview, Optum Rx clinical pharmacist, Arash Sadeghi, discusses developments for non-invasive diagnostics for liver disease and how such advancements could potentially impact the landscape of conditions like NASH.

The report briefly mentions the development of non-invasive diagnostics for liver disease. How could such advancements potentially impact the landscape of diagnosing and managing conditions like NASH, particularly in relation to potential treatments like Resmetirom?

Historically, the gold standard for diagnosis for NASH was liver biopsy, but as you can imagine, that's invasive, it can carry its own risk for complications. So, over the last several years, there's been a huge growth and using noninvasive tools to diagnose liver diseases. And that includes NASH. So, the big impact for that is, first, it obviously will increase the number of individuals that could actually be diagnosed, right, because now you don't have to go through a biopsy, you can use these other noninvasive tests to get a diagnosis with reasonable certainty. And so, there's just that opens the door for more patients to be diagnosed.

I mentioned this earlier, NASH is very under diagnosed as a condition in the US a very small subset of patients actually know they have it. So being able to use these non-invasive tests, is certainly going to increase the number of patients who can be diagnose. And ultimately, the number of patients who could be candidates for a drug like Resmetirom. The other benefit of non-invasive tests is that it gives providers it gives payers another tool to measure whether the drug is actually working once it's been started. Right, if you have, if you, if you were just doing a biopsy, it would be really difficult to start a patient on a drug and then re biopsy them every six months every year, that's just realistically never going to happen. But with the with having these non-invasive tests, it gives you another way to measure whether the patient is actually getting benefit, because you can see if they're getting improvements and those non-invasive tests.

So, I think the big thing is, first, it's going to increase the number of people who are going to know they have the condition increases the number of patients who could be candidates. And then also gives us a way to figure out whether these drugs are actually working.

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