A Randomized Comparative Effectiveness Study of Oral Triple Therapy Versus Etanercept Plus Methotrexate in Early Aggressive Rheumatoid Arthritis The Treatment of Early Aggressive Rheumatoid Arthritis Trial

University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15261, USA.
Arthritis & Rheumatology (Impact Factor: 7.76). 09/2012; 64(9):2824-35. DOI: 10.1002/art.34498
Source: PubMed


To assess whether it is better to intensively treat all patients with early rheumatoid arthritis (RA) using combinations of drugs or to reserve this approach for patients who do not have an appropriate response (as determined by a Disease Activity Score in 28 joints using the erythrocyte sedimentation rate [DAS28-ESR] of ≥ 3.2 at week 24) to methotrexate (MTX) monotherapy, and to assess whether combination therapy with MTX plus etanercept is superior to the combination of MTX plus sulfasalazine plus hydroxychloroquine.
The Treatment of Early Aggressive Rheumatoid Arthritis (TEAR) study is a 2-year, randomized, double-blind trial. A 2 × 2 factorial design was used to randomly assign subjects to 1 of 4 treatment arms: immediate treatment with MTX plus etanercept, immediate oral triple therapy (MTX plus sulfasalazine plus hydroxychloroquine), or step-up from MTX monotherapy to one of the combination therapies (MTX plus etanercept or MTX plus sulfasalazine plus hydroxychloroquine) at week 24 if the DAS28-ESR was ≥ 3.2. All treatment arms included matching placebos. The primary outcome was an observed-group analysis of DAS28-ESR values from week 48 to week 102.
At week 24 (beginning of the step-up period), subjects in the 2 immediate-treatment groups demonstrated a greater reduction in the DAS28-ESR compared with those in the 2 step-up groups (3.6 versus 4.2; P < 0.0001); no differences between the combination-therapy regimens were observed. Between week 48 and week 102, subjects randomized to the step-up arms had a DAS28-ESR clinical response that was not different from that of subjects who initially received combination therapy, regardless of the treatment arm. There was no significant difference in the DAS28-ESR between subjects randomized to oral triple therapy and those randomized to receive MTX plus etanercept. By week 102, there was a statistically significant difference in the change in radiographic measurements from baseline between the group receiving MTX plus etanercept and the group receiving oral triple therapy (0.64 versus 1.69; P = 0.047).
There were no differences in the mean DAS28-ESR during weeks 48-102 between subjects randomized to receive MTX plus etanercept and those randomized to triple therapy, regardless of whether they received immediate combination treatment or step-up from MTX monotherapy. At 102 weeks, immediate combination treatment with either strategy was more effective than MTX monotherapy prior to the initiation of step-up therapy. Initial use of MTX monotherapy with the addition of sulfasalazine plus hydroxychloroquine (or etanercept, if necessary, after 6 months) is a reasonable therapeutic strategy for patients with early RA. Treatment with the combination of MTX plus etanercept resulted in a statistically significant radiographic benefit compared with oral triple therapy.

Download full-text


Available from: George Howard, Sep 08, 2014
  • Source
    • "Moreland et al. [31] was a 2-year, randomized, double-blind trial with four treatment arms: immediate treatment with MTX plus etanercept, immediate oral triple therapy (MTX plus sulfasalazine plus hydroxychloroquine), or step-up from MTX monotherapy to one of the combination therapies (MTX plus etanercept or MTX plus sulfasalazine plus hydroxychloroquine) at week 24. Since before week 24, treatment arms with MTX + etanercept and MTX alone were selected to be included in this meta-analysis. "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The aim of this meta-analysis was to compare the efficacy and safety of infliximab-biosimilar and other available biologicals for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis (RA), namely abatacept, adalimumab, certolizumab pegol, etanercept, golimumab, infliximab, rituximab and tocilizumab. A systematic literature review of MEDLINE database until August 2013 was carried out to identify relevant randomized controlled trials (RCTs). Bayesian mixed treatment comparison method was applied for the pairwise comparison of treatments. Improvement rates by the American College of Rheumatology criteria (ACR20 and ACR50) at week 24 were used as efficacy endpoints, and the occurrence of serious adverse events was considered to assess the safety of the biologicals. Thirty-six RCTs were included in the meta-analysis. All the biological agents proved to be superior to placebo. For ACR20 response, certolizumab pegol showed the highest odds ratio (OR) compared to placebo, OR 7.69 [95 % CI 3.69-14.26], followed by abatacept OR 3.7 [95 % CI 2.17-6.06], tocilizumab OR 3.69 [95 % CI 1.87-6.62] and infliximab-biosimilar OR 3.47 [95 % CI 0.85-9.7]. For ACR50 response, certolizumab pegol showed the highest OR compared to placebo OR 8.46 [3.74-16.82], followed by tocilizumab OR 5.57 [95 % CI 2.77-10.09], and infliximab-biosimilar OR 4.06 [95 % CI 1.01-11.54]. Regarding the occurrence of serious adverse events, the results show no statistically significant difference between infliximab-biosimilar and placebo, OR 1.87 [95 % CI 0.74-3.84]. No significant difference regarding efficacy and safety was found between infliximab-biosimilar and the other biological treatments. This is the first indirect meta-analysis in RA that compares the efficacy and safety of biosimilar-infliximab to the other biologicals indicated in RA. We found no significant difference between infliximab-biosimilar and other biological agents in terms of clinical efficacy and safety.
    Full-text · Article · May 2014 · The European Journal of Health Economics
  • Source
    • "The two-year results did confirm that the anti-TNF combination was superior in preventing radiographic damage. The TEAR trial confirmed neither the clinical nor the radiographic benefit of anti-TNF over conventional combination therapy, but featured a more complex design and analysis that may have underestimated the differences between the treatment arms [10]. The NEO-RACo trial was designed to study the long-term outcomes of the combination of MTX, sulfasalazine, hydroxychloroquine and prednisolone treatment with and without additional infliximab therapy [11]. "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Despite considerable advances in the management of rheumatoid arthritis, results are still not satisfactory for all patients. The treatment goal in rheumatoid arthritis is remission, and there currently are numerous conventional and biological medications available to reach this aim. There are also different treatment strategies but with only limited comparative evidence about their efficacies. More patients now achieve remission while on treatment, but it remains elusive in the majority of patients. Treatment-free remission, the ultimate goal of therapy, is only achieved in very few patients; even when this happens, it is most likely due to the natural course of the disease rather than to any specific therapies. Modern treatment is based on the initiation of aggressive therapy as soon as the diagnosis is established, and on modifying or intensifying therapy guided by frequent assessment of disease activity. In this commentary we will discuss the current treatment paradigm as well as the possibility of an induction-maintenance regimen with biological disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs in early rheumatoid arthritis.
    Preview · Article · Feb 2014 · BMC Medicine
  • Source
    • "DmTSS 0.5; DAS28CRP < 3.2 and DmTSS 0.5 ADA þ MTX vs. Placebo þ MTX: 65% vs. 65%; 86% vs. 72% (p < 0.001), 60% vs. 48% (p < 0.001) ETN Moreland 2012 (TEAR) [25] "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The use of biological disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs (bDMARDs) has changed the face of rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Achieving remission, normal function and prevention of joint damage are now possible for many patients with RA. In clinical practice, however, particularly with cost considerations, bDMARDs are usually prescribed after failure of one or more conventional synthetic DMARDs. With evidence that early treatment has a greater impact than later on, the question regarding initial bDMARD therapy and their potential role within a window of opportunity to influence disease outcomes remain. The increasing emphasis on early diagnosis and research into the preclinical phase of the disease also heralds the question, 'Can bDMARDs prevent the development of RA?' The aim of this review is to review randomised controlled trials with bDMARDs as initial therapy in early RA and to discuss their role in early disease.
    Full-text · Article · Aug 2013 · Best practice & research. Clinical rheumatology
Show more