Smolen, J. S. et al. Effect of interleukin-6 receptor inhibition with tocilizumab in patients with rheumatoid arthritis (OPTION study): a double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomised trial. Lancet 371, 987-997

Division of Rheumatology, Department of Internal Medicine III, Medical University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria.
The Lancet (Impact Factor: 45.22). 03/2008; 371(9617):987-97. DOI: 10.1016/S0140-6736(08)60453-5
Source: PubMed


Interleukin 6 is involved in the pathogenesis of rheumatoid arthritis via its broad effects on immune and inflammatory responses. Our aim was to assess the therapeutic effects of blocking interleukin 6 by inhibition of the interleukin-6 receptor with tocilizumab in patients with rheumatoid arthritis.
In this double-blind, randomised, placebo-controlled, parallel group phase III study, 623 patients with moderate to severe active rheumatoid arthritis were randomly assigned with an interactive voice response system, stratified by site with a randomisation list provided by the study sponsor, to receive tocilizumab 8 mg/kg (n=205), tocilizumab 4 mg/kg (214), or placebo (204) intravenously every 4 weeks, with methotrexate at stable pre-study doses (10-25 mg/week). Rescue therapy with tocilizumab 8 mg/kg was offered at week 16 to patients with less than 20% improvement in both swollen and tender joint counts. The primary endpoint was the proportion of patients with 20% improvement in signs and symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis according to American College of Rheumatology criteria (ACR20 response) at week 24. Analyses were by intention to treat. This trial is registered with, number NCT00106548.
The intention-to-treat analysis population consisted of 622 patients: one patient in the 4 mg/kg group did not receive study treatment and was thus excluded. At 24 weeks, ACR20 responses were seen in more patients receiving tocilizumab than in those receiving placebo (120 [59%] patients in the 8 mg/kg group, 102 [48%] in the 4 mg/kg group, 54 [26%] in the placebo group; odds ratio 4.0 [95% CI 2.6-6.1], p<0.0001 for 8 mg/kg vs placebo; and 2.6 [1.7-3.9], p<0.0001 for 4 mg/kg vs placebo). More people receiving tocilizumab than those receiving placebo had at least one adverse event (143 [69%] in the 8 mg/kg group; 151 [71%] in the 4 mg/kg group; 129 [63%] in the placebo group). The most common serious adverse events were serious infections or infestations, reported by six patients in the 8 mg/kg group, three in the 4 mg/kg group, and two in the placebo group.
Tocilizumab could be an effective therapeutic approach in patients with moderate to severe active rheumatoid arthritis.
F Hoffmann-La Roche, Chugai Pharmaceutical.

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    • "Input Base Low High Source Population characteristics Age (y), mean 54 48 59 [12] Body weight (kg) 77 70 85 – Sex: female, % 80 72 89 [12] Starting HAQ score, mean 1.65 1.49 1.82 [10] "
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    ABSTRACT: To estimate the cost-effectiveness of tocilizumab (TCZ) monotherapy (Mono) versus adalimumab (ADA) Mono from the US payer perspective in patients with rheumatoid arthritis for whom methotrexate is inappropriate. We compared TCZ Mono (8 mg/kg monthly) with ADA Mono (40 mg every other week), using efficacy results from a head-to-head study, ADalimumab ACTemrA (ADACTA). We calculated the incremental cost per responder (achievement of American College of Rheumatology [ACR] 20% improvement criteria, ACR 50% improvement criteria, ACR 70% improvement criteria, or low disease activity score) for TCZ versus ADA at 6 months. A patient-level simulation was used to estimate the lifetime incremental cost per quality-adjusted life-year (QALY) of initiating treatment with TCZ Mono versus ADA Mono. Both drugs are followed by an etanercept-certolizumab-palliative care sequence. Nonresponders discontinue at 6 months; responders experience a constant probability of discontinuation. Discontinuers move to the next treatment. ACR responses produce changes in the Health Assessment Questionnaire (HAQ) score. We mapped the HAQ score to utility to estimate QALYs. Costs include those related to hospitalization and those related to treatment (drug acquisition, administration, and monitoring). Probabilistic and one-way sensitivity analyses were conducted, along with several scenario analyses. Compared with ADA, TCZ was more effective, with an estimated 6-month incremental cost ranging from $6,570 per additional low disease activity score achiever to $14,265 per additional ACR 70% improvement criteria responder. The lifetime incremental cost-effectiveness ratio was $36,944/QALY. TCZ Mono is projected to be cost-effective compared with ADA Mono in patients with severe rheumatoid arthritis for whom methotrexate is not appropriate, from a US payer perspective. Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier Inc.
    Value in Health 01/2015; 31(2). DOI:10.1016/j.jval.2014.10.013 · 3.28 Impact Factor
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    • "Data from animal models have shown that IL-6 plays a non-redundant role in several pathophysiological events, such as fever, liver acute-phase response, and in the transition from acute to chronic inflammation [3]. The recent introduction of tocilizumab (TCZ), an IL-6 receptor blocker, in the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and systemic juvenile idiopathic arthritis (s-JIA), clearly demonstrated a major role of this cytokine in the pathogenesis of joint and systemic inflammation [4], [5]. However, the cellular and molecular mechanisms by which high levels of IL-6, which are present in blood and synovial fluids contribute to the pathogenesis are not completely understood. "
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    ABSTRACT: The role of Interleukin(IL)-6 in the pathogenesis of joint and systemic inflammation in rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and systemic juvenile idiopathic arthritis (s-JIA) has been clearly demonstrated. However, the mechanisms by which IL-6 contributes to the pathogenesis are not completely understood. This study investigates whether IL-6 affects, alone or upon toll like receptor (TLR) ligand stimulation, the production of inflammatory cytokines and chemokines in human peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs), synovial fluid mononuclear cells from JIA patients (SFMCs) and fibroblast-like synoviocytes from rheumatoid arthritis patients (RA synoviocytes) and signalling pathways involved. PBMCs were pre-treated with IL-6 and soluble IL-6 Receptor (sIL-6R). SFMCs and RA synoviocytes were pre-treated with IL-6/sIL-6R or sIL-6R, alone or in combination with Tocilizumab (TCZ). Cells were stimulated with LPS, S100A8-9, poly(I-C), CpG, Pam2CSK4, MDP, IL-1β. Treatment of PBMCs with IL-6 induced production of TNF-α, CXCL8, and CCL2, but not IL-1β. Addition of IL-6 to the same cells after stimulation with poly(I-C), CpG, Pam2CSK4, and MDP induced a significant increase in IL-1β and CXCL8, but not TNF-α production compared with TLR ligands alone. This enhanced production of IL-1β and CXCL8 paralleled increased p65 NF-κB activation. In contrast, addition of IL-6 to PBMCs stimulated with LPS or S100A8-9 (TLR-4 ligands) led to reduction of IL-1β, TNF-α and CXCL8 with reduced p65 NF-κB activation. IL-6/IL-1β co-stimulation increased CXCL8, CCL2 and IL-6 production. Addition of IL-6 to SFMCs stimulated with LPS or S100A8 increased CXCL8, CCL2 and IL-1β production. Treatment of RA synoviocytes with sIL-6R increased IL-6, CXCL8 and CCL2 production, with increased STAT3 and p65 NF-κB phosphorylation. Our results suggest that IL-6 amplifies TLR-induced inflammatory response. This effect may be relevant in the presence of high IL-6 and sIL-6R levels, such as in arthritic joints in the context of stimulation by endogenous TLR ligands.
    PLoS ONE 10/2014; 9(10):e107886. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0107886 · 3.23 Impact Factor
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    • "Thirteen studies, including ACT-RAY and ADACTA, provided outcome data for pain and PGA [9,11,36,39,41,44,49-51,54,55]. All seventeen studies provided information on HAQ-DI. "
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    ABSTRACT: Objective To compare biologics as monotherapy or in combination with methotrexate (MTX) in terms of patient reported outcomes (PROs) in RA patients with an inadequate response to conventional DMARDs (DMARD-IR). Methods With a systematic literature review 17 RCTs were identified that evaluated adalimumab, certolizumab pegol, etanercept, golimumab, infliximab, abatacept, anakinra or tocilizumab. Treatment effects in terms of pain (0-100 mm), patient’s global assessment of disease activity (PGA; 0-100 mm), Health Assessment-Questionnaire (HAQ) disability index (DI; 0–3), and the physical component summary (PCS) of the SF36 Health Survey (0–100) at 24 weeks were combined by means of Bayesian network meta-analyses. Results With tocilizumab monotherapy, greater improvements in pain (difference = -11.1; (95% Credible Interval -21.3, -0.1)) and PGA (-10.3 (-20.4, 0.8)) were observed than with aTNF monotherapy. Tocilizumab was at least as efficacious as aTNF in HAQ-DI improvements (-0.16; (-0.37, 0.05)). aTNF + MTX (-17.9 (-23.1, -13.0) & -19.1 (-24.2, -14.4)), abatacept + MTX (-23.0 (-47.3, 1. 5) & -13.6 (-28.4, 2.0)) and tocilizumab + MTX (-16.0 (-26.3, -6.3) & -15.1 (-25.1, -5.7)) showed comparable reductions in pain and PGA relative to MTX. Efficacy of anakinra + MTX was much smaller as compared to other biologics. The greatest improvements in HAQ-DI relative to MTX were observed with aTNF + MTX (-0.30 (-0.37, -0.22)) and tocilizumab + MTX (-0.27 (-0.42, -0.12)), followed by abatacept + MTX (-0.21 (-0.37, -0.05)) and anakinra + MTX (-0.11 (-0.26, 0.05)). The improvements in SF36-PCS with abatacept + MTX, aTNF + MTX and tocilizumab + MTX were comparable. There is a >90% probability that aTNF + MTX results in a greater improvement in pain (-12.4), PGA (-16.1) and HAQ-DI (-0.21) than aTNF as monotherapy. Efficacy of tocilizumab + MTX showed comparable improvements in PROs as tocilizumab monotherapy. Conclusions Based on a network meta-analysis involving indirect comparison of trial findings, the following observations were made for DMARD-IR patients. In monotherapy, tocilizumab was associated with a greater improvement in pain and self-reported disease activity than aTNF, and was at least as efficacious regarding functional ability. The improvements in PROs with aTNF, abatacept and tocilizumab in combination with MTX were comparable. Improvements in PROs with tocilizumab as monotherapy were similar to that of tocilizumab + MTX, whereas aTNF as monotherapy was likely to be less efficacious than aTNF + MTX.
    Health and Quality of Life Outcomes 07/2014; 12(1):102. DOI:10.1186/1477-7525-12-102 · 2.12 Impact Factor
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