Author Topic: (Abst.) Rituxan superior to Copaxone, interferon-beta in relapse control and tolerability in RRMS  (Read 126 times)

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Offline agate

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From PubMed, June 27, 2017:

Comparative effectiveness of rituximab relative to IFN-β or glatiramer acetate in relapsing-remitting MS from the Swedish MS registry

Spelman T1, Frisell T2, Piehl F3, Hillert J3.

Author information
Department of Clinical Neuroscience, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden/Department of Medicine and Melbourne Brain Centre at the Royal Melbourne Hospital, University of Melbourne, Melbourne, VIC, Australia.
Department of Medicine, Karolinska Institutet, Solna, Sweden.
Department of Clinical Neuroscience, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden.


To compare treatment effectiveness and persistence in relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis patients who initiated rituximab versus glatiramer acetate (GA) or interferon-beta (IFN-β).


A total of 461 patients from the Swedish MS registry in the rituximab arm were propensity score matched on a 1:2 basis with 922 patients from the IFN-β/GA comparator, between April 2005 and November 2015. Annualised relapse rate (ARR) was compared using the Poisson method. A marginal Cox model was used to analyse time to first relapse, 3-month confirmed disability progression and treatment discontinuation in the matched sample. A signed-rank test was used to compare Expanded Disability Status Scale (EDSS) change from baseline.


Rituximab was associated with a reduction in ARR (0.003; 95% confidence interval (CI) = 0.001, 0.009) relative to IFN-β/GA (0.026; 95% CI = 0.020, 0.033) ( p < 0.001). Rituximab was associated with an 87% reduction in the relapse rate (hazard ratio (HR) = 0.13; 95% CI = 0.04, 0.41) and an 85% reduction in the discontinuation rate (HR = 0.15; 95% CI = 0.11, 0.20) relative to IFN-β/GA. EDSS regression from baseline was greater in the rituximab group at 12 and 24 months.


Rituximab appears to be superior to first-generation disease-modifying treatments (DMTs) with respect to relapse control and tolerability, whereas superiority on disability outcomes is less clear.

The abstract can be seen here.
MS Speaks--online for 16 years

SPMS, diagnosed 1980. Avonex 2001-2004. Copaxone 2007-2010. Glatopa (glatiramer acetate 40mg 3 times/week) since 12/16/20.


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