Irritable bowel syndrome with constipation (IBS-C) is a common condition that affects the digestive system (the gut). Symptoms may include stomach cramps, bloating and constipation. The exact cause is unknown, and IBS-C is often a lifelong condition. While there is no cure, dietary changes and the use of medication can often help control symptoms. IBS-C has been linked to issues of digestion, stress, and a family history of the condition. IBS-C affects approximately 7-21% of the population globally and is a significant health care burden impacting health and quality of life of affected individuals. Treatment of IBS-C is particularly challenging as symptoms fluctuate over time and are often recurrent and resistant to administered drugs.
Tenapanor is an oral drug under development for the treatment of IBS-C. It acts directly in the gut to reduce absorption of sodium. Sodium increases fluid in the gut, loosening stool, and alleviating constipation. If licensed, tenapanor may offer an additional treatment option for IBS-C by increasing intestinal fluid content, accelerating gastrointestinal (GI) motility, and providing relief from symptomatic pain and discomfort. By acting directly in the gut, tenapanor also has a potential advantage of having minimal side effects.
Ustekinumab is a drug which is given as an injection and works by blocking the molecules that are involved in the inflammation which occurs in UC. Ustekinumab is already licenced for use in people with Crohn’s disease, which is another type of IBD. If ustekinumab is licenced this would provide another treatment option for people with moderate to severe active UC.