Tolerability and safety profile of 12- to 28-week treatment with interferon beta-1b 250 and 500 microg QOD in patients with relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis: a multicenter, randomized, double-blind, parallel-group pilot study.
ABSTRACT It is not known whether the currently available treatment regimen of interferon beta-1b (IFNbeta-1b) 250 microg provides the maximum benefit possible in the treatment of relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis (RRMS), or whether higher doses of IFNbeta-1b will prove to be more beneficial.
The objective of the present study was to evaluate the tolerability and safety profile of IFNbeta-1b 500 microg compared with the currently approved 250-microg dose.
A multicenter, randomized, double-blind, parallel-group pilot study was carried out to compare IFNbeta-1b 250 microg with IFNbeta-1b 500 microg, both self-administered SC QOD for >or=12 weeks in patients with RRMS. Patients in both groups started with 25% (0.25 mL) of their final dose and were scheduled to increase the dose by 0.25 mL every 2 weeks, so that the full dose (1.0 mL, 250 microg or 500 microg) would be reached by week 7. The primary outcome measure was the percentage of patients experiencing each of the following adverse events (AEs): influenza-like symptoms (general term used to code the presence of >1 symptom typical of influenza), fever, myalgia, asthenia, headache, injection-site reactions, injection-site pain, or liver or hematologic abnormalities. All patients underwent a priori magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) with 0.1 mmol/kg gadolinium (Gd)-diethylenetriaminepentaacetic acid as contrast medium at screening and at week 12. MRI evaluation was included as a safety measure to monitor for excessive new disease not visible through clinical symptoms.
Seventy-seven patients were assessed for inclusion in the study. Of these, 6 patients were screening failures and the remaining 71 were randomized to treatment (38-250 and 33-500 microg IFNbeta-1b). The uneven numbers in the groups were a consequence of the randomization process. Two patients in the 250-microg group (withdrawal of consent) and 1 in the 500-microg group (not completing follow-up visit) prematurely discontinued medication. The demographic characteristics were not significantly different between the 250-microg (n=38; mean [SD] age, 37.9 [8.3] years; weight, 83.5 [19.0] kg; height, 168.4 [9.3] cm) and 500-microg (n=33; mean [SD] age, 37.8 [7.7] years; weight, 82.3 [19.5] kg; height, 169.9 [10.5] cm) treatment groups. The patients in both groups were mostly white (87% and 73%, respectively). Baseline Expanded Disability Status Scale scores also were not significantly different between the 2 groups (mean [SD] score, 2.8 [1.4] vs 2.0 [1.4], respectively). In the IFN(2)-1b 250-microg group, 97% of the patients titrated to the full dose at some point during the course of the study, compared with 91% of the 500-microg group (P=NS). A dose-response effect was observed in some of the more frequent AEs (no. [%]) that included influenza-like syndrome (250-microg group, 13  vs 500-microg group, 16 ), asthenia (13  vs 16 , respectively), headache (12  vs 12 ), myalgia (10  vs 13 ), hypesthesia (10  vs 11 ), nausea (6  vs 8 ), paresthesia (6  vs 8 ), myasthenia (4  vs 8 ), chills (3  vs 6 ), depression (3  vs 5 ), back pain (2  vs 5 ), increased liver enzymes (4  vs 6 ), lymphopenia (4  vs 3 ), fever (2  vs 4 ), and pain in extremities (1  vs 4 ). The between-group incidence of injection-site reactions was not significantly different. No new or unexpected AEs were recorded. Changes in MRI parameters between screening and 12 weeks were not significantly different between dose groups; these included median T2 lesion volume, median Gd-enhanced lesion volume, median Gd-enhanced lesion number, and mean number of newly active lesions.
IFNbeta-1b 500 microg administered SC QOD was generally well tolerated in these patients with RRMS. Large, randomized controlled studies are needed to determine if there are significant differences in MRI end points between the 250- and 500-microg doses.
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ABSTRACT: Glatiramer acetate and interferon-beta are approved first-line disease-modifying treatments (DMTs) for multiple sclerosis (MS). DMTs can be associated with cutaneous adverse events, which may influence treatment adherence and patient quality of life. In this systematic review, we aimed to provide an overview of the clinical spectrum and the incidence of skin reactions associated with DMTs. A systematic literature search was performed up to May 2011 in Medline, Embase, and Cochrane databases without applying restrictions in study design, language, or publishing date. Eligible for inclusion were articles describing any skin reaction related to DMTs in MS patients. Selection of articles and data extraction were performed by two authors independently. One hundred and six articles were included, of which 41 (39%) were randomized controlled trials or cohort studies reporting incidences of mainly local injection-site reactions. A large number of patients had experienced some form of localized injection-site reaction: up to 90% for those using subcutaneous formulations and up to 33% for those using an intramuscular formulation. Sixty-five case-reports involving 106 MS patients described a wide spectrum of cutaneous adverse events, the most frequently reported being lipoatrophy, cutaneous necrosis and ulcers, and various immune-mediated inflammatory skin diseases. DMTs for MS are frequently associated with local injection-site reactions and a wide spectrum of generalized cutaneous adverse events, in particular, the subcutaneous formulations. Although some of the skin reactions may be severe and persistent, most of them are mild and do not require cessation of DMT.Multiple Sclerosis 02/2012; 18(12). DOI:10.1177/1352458512438239 · 4.86 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Interferon beta preparations are the most widely used initial therapies prescribed for patients with relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis. Phase III studies have demonstrated comparable efficacy on clinical measures of disease activity, variable benefits on radiological measures, and good overall tolerability. Subsequent clinical studies have attempted to compare directly the three available interferon beta preparations, reporting both safety and efficacy data. We review the literature on studies evaluating interferon beta therapy for patients with relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis, discuss reasons for discrepant findings, and assess the utility of interferon beta-based combination regimens as the focus of future studies in the increasingly complex multiple sclerosis therapy landscape.Therapeutic Advances in Neurological Disorders 09/2011; 4(5):281-96. DOI:10.1177/1756285611413825
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ABSTRACT: Multiple sclerosis (MS) is chronic inflammatory and demyelinating disease with either a progressive (10%-15%) or relapsing-remitting (85%-90%) course. The pathological hallmarks of MS are lesions of both white and grey matter in the central nervous system. The onset of the disease is usually around 30 years of age. The patients experience an acute focal neurologic dysfunction which is not characteristic, followed by partial or complete recovery. Acute episodes of neurologic dysfunction with diverse signs and symptoms will then recur throughout the life of a patient, with periods of partial or complete remission and clinical stability in between. Currently, there are several therapeutic options for MS with disease-modifying properties. Immunomodulatory therapy with interferon beta-1b (IFN-β1b) or -1a, glatiramer and natalizumab shows similar efficacy; in a resistant or intolerant patient, the most recently approved therapeutic option is mitoxantrone. IFN-β1b in patients with MS binds to specific receptors on surface of immune cells, changing the expression of several genes and leading to a decrease in quantity of cell-associated adhesion molecules, inhibition of major histocompatibility complex class II expression and reduction in inflammatory cells migration into the central nervous system. After 2 years of treatment, IFN-β1b reduces the risk of development of clinically defined MS from 45% (with placebo) to 28% (with IFN-β1b). It also reduces relapses for 34% (1.31 exacerbations annually with placebo and 0.9 with higher dose of IFN-β1b) and makes 31% more patients relapse-free. In secondary-progressive disease annual rate of progression is 3% lower with IFN-β1b. In recommended doses IFN-β1b causes the following frequent adverse effects: injection site reactions (redness, discoloration, inflammation, pain, necrosis and non-specific reactions), insomnia, influenza-like syndrome, asthenia, headache, myalgia, hypoesthesia, nausea, paresthesia, myasthenia, chills and depression. Efficacy of IFN-β1b in relapsing-remitting MS is higher than that of IFN-β1a, and similar to the efficacy of glatiramer acetate. These facts promote IFN-β1b as one of the most important drugs in the spectrum of immunological therapies for this debilitating disease.Journal of Inflammation Research 03/2010; 3:25-31. DOI:10.2147/JIR.S9480