A clinical trial has indicated that multiple sclerosis drug simvastatin can significantly reduce the number of relapses among people with the condition.
According to an article in the Multiple Sclerosis journal, 85 people with relapsing remitting multiple sclerosis (RRMS) took a course of the treatment in conjunction with their existing programme of beta-interferon.
The results showed that relapses were reduced by 50 per cent compared to those taking beta-interferon alone.
Commenting on the findings, the head of biomedical research at the MS Society Dr Doug Brown welcomed the study as the first step towards full production of the drug.
"It's particularly exciting to see a drug that is currently available to treat a different condition being tested for its effects on MS; the next step will be to conduct larger clinical trials to expand on these initial findings," he added.
According to MS Society research, the disease affects over 100,000 people in the UK.