GA has life in it yet. Does long-term safety trump short-term efficacy? #ClinicSpeak #MSBlog #MSResearch
Epub: Ziemssen et al. A 2-year observational study of patients with relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis converting to glatiramer acetate from other disease-modifying therapies: the COPTIMIZE trial. J Neurol. 2014 Aug 14.
Background: Studies suggest that patients with relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis (RRMS) who do not benefit from other disease-modifying treatments (DMTs) may benefit from converting to glatiramer acetate (GA).
Objectives: COPTIMIZE was a 24-month observational study designed to assess the disease course of patients converting to GA 20 mg daily from another DMT.
Methods: Eligible patients had converted to GA and had received prior DMT for 3-6 months, depending on the reasons for conversion. Patients were assessed at baseline and at 6, 12, 18, and 24 months.
Results: In total, 672 patients from 148 centers worldwide were included in the analysis. Change of therapy to GA was prompted primarily by lack of efficacy (53.6 %) or intolerable adverse events (AEs; 44.8 %). Over a 24-month period, 72.7 % of patients were relapse free. Mean annual relapse rate decreased from 0.86 [95 % confidence interval (CI) 0.81-0.91] before the change to 0.32 (95 % CI 0.26-0.40; p < 0.0001) at last observation, while the progression of disability was halted, as the Kurtzke Expanded Disability Status Scale (EDSS) scores remained stable. Patients improved significantly (p < 0.05) on measures of fatigue, quality of life, depression, and cognition; mobility scores remained stable.
Conclusions: The results indicate that changing RRMS patients to GA is associated with positive treatment outcomes.