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Rituximab in multiple sclerosis: a retrospective observational study on safety and efficacy
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Pharmacology and Clinical Neuroscience, Clinical Neuroscience.
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Pharmacology and Clinical Neuroscience, Clinical Neuroscience. Department of Clinical Neuroscience, Danderyd Hospital, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm.
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2016 (English)In: Neurology, ISSN 0028-3878, E-ISSN 1526-632X, Vol. 87, no 20, 2074-2081 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Objective: To investigate the safety and efficacy of rituximab in multiple sclerosis (MS). Methods: In this retrospective uncontrolled observational multicenter study, off-label rituximab-treated patients with MS were identified through the Swedish MS register. Outcome data were collected from the MS register and medical charts. Adverse events (AEs) grades 2-5 according to the Common Terminology Criteria for Adverse Events were recorded. Results: A total of 822 rituximab-treated patients with MS were identified: 557 relapsing-remitting MS (RRMS), 198 secondary progressive MS (SPMS), and 67 primary progressive MS (PPMS). At baseline, 26.2% had contrast-enhancing lesions (CELs). Patients were treated with 500 or 1,000 mg rituximab IV every 6-12 months, during a mean 21.8 (SD 14.3) months. During treatment, the annualized relapse rates were 0.044 (RRMS), 0.038 (SPMS), and 0.015 (PPMS), and 4.6% of patients displayed CELs. Median Expanded Disability Status Scale remained unchanged in RRMS (p = 0.42) and increased by 0.5 and 1.0 in SPMS and PPMS, respectively (p = 0.10 and 0.25). Infusion-related AEs occurred during 7.8% of infusions and most were mild. A total of 89 AEs grades >= 2 (of which 76 infections) were recorded in 72 patients. No case of progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy was detected. Conclusions: This is the largest cohort of patients with MS treated with rituximab reported so far. The safety, clinical, and MRI findings in this heterogeneous real-world cohort treated with different doses of rituximab were similar to those reported in previous randomized controlled trials on B-cell depletion therapy in MS. Classification of evidence: This study provides Class IV evidence that for patients with MS, rituximab is safe and effective.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2016. Vol. 87, no 20, 2074-2081 p.
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Neurosciences Neurology
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URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-132168DOI: 10.1212/WNL.0000000000003331ISI: 000392236100007PubMedID: 27760868OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-132168DiVA: diva2:1078690
Available from: 2017-03-06 Created: 2017-03-06 Last updated: 2017-05-11Bibliographically approved

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Salzer, JonatanSvenningsson, RasmusIslam-Jakobsson, ProtikVågberg, MattiasSundström, PeterSvenningsson, Anders
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