Saturday, 1 February 2014

Statins add little to Interferons

Kamm CP, El-Koussy M, Humpert S, Findling O, Burren Y, Schwegler G, Donati F, Müller M, Müller F, Slotboom J, Kappos L, Naegelin Y, Mattle HP; SWABIMS Study Group.
PLoS One. 2014 Jan 30;9(1):e86663. 

BACKGROUND:

Statins have anti-inflammatory and immunomodulatory properties in addition to lipid-lowering effects.

OBJECTIVES:

To report the 12-month extension of a phase II trial evaluating the efficacy, safety and tolerability of atorvastatin 40 mg/d added to interferon beta-1b (IFNB-1b) in relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis (RRMS).

METHODS:

In the randomized, multicenter, parallel-group, rater-blinded core study, 77 RRMS patients started IFNB-1b. At month three they were randomized 1∶1 to receive atorvastatin 40 mg/d or not in addition to IFNB-1b until month 15. In the subsequent extension study, patients continued with unchanged medication for another 12 months. Data at study end were compared to data at month three of the core study.

RESULTS:

27 of 72 patients that finished the core study entered the extension study. 45 patients were lost mainly due to a safety analysis during the core study including a recruitment stop for the extension study. The primary end point, the proportion of patients with new lesions on T2-weighted images was equal in both groups (odds ratio 1.926; 95% CI 0.265-14.0007; p = 0.51). All secondary endpoints including number of new lesions and total lesion volume on T2-weighted images, total number of Gd-enhancing lesions on T1-weighted images, volume of grey and white matter, EDSS, MSFC, relapse rate, number of relapse-free patients and neutralizing antibodies did not show significant differences either. The combination therapy was well tolerated.

CONCLUSIONS:

Atorvastatin 40 mg/day in addition to IFNB-1b did not have any beneficial effects on RRMS compared to IFNB-1b monotherapy over a period of 24 months.

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