Trending News Today: FDA OKs New Clinical Trial for Stem Cell Treatment in Multiple Sclerosis

Top news of the day across the health care landscape.

BrainStorm Cell Therapeutics received FDA approval to begin a clinical trial of its experimental stem cell treatment in patients with progressive multiple sclerosis (MS), Reuters reported. According to the article, the company is already studying NurOwn in patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and expects to have advanced phase 3 trial results at the end of 2019 or early 2020. BrainStorm announced that it expects to start the phase 2 trial for MS in the first quarter of 2019.

A federal judge in Texas ruled the Affordable Care Act (ACA) unconstitutional on Friday, the New York Times reported. In the ruling, Judge Reed O’Connor of the Federal District Court of Forth Worth stated that the mandate requiring individuals to have health insurance is unconstitutional and the remaining provisions of the ACA are invalid, according to the article. The ruling was over a lawsuit filed this year by a group pf Republican governors and state attorney generals.

New data from the CDC show that the number of children and teens who received the flu vaccine as of mid-November was up nearly 7 percentage points over the same time last year, and coverage among adults was up 6.4 percentage points, according to STAT. The CDC noted that fewer than half of Americans have been vaccinated overall this year, but more young children are getting vaccinated. The findings do not indicate whether more individuals will be vaccinated overall this flu season or whether last year’s season changed behavior, the article reported.