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Friday, April 22, 2016

Tysabri No Help in SPMS - Drug didn't reduce disability progression but may benefit upper limb function


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VANCOUVER -- Natalizumab (Tysabri) didn't slow disability progression in patients with secondary progressive multiple sclerosis (SPMS), researchers reported here.

The ASCEND trial missed its primary endpoint of reducing progression as measured by a composite endpoint assessing disability unrelated to relapses, Deborah Steiner, MD, of Biogen, reported during the emerging science session at the American Academy of Neurology meeting here.

But Steiner noted that there was a significant benefit on upper extremity function.

"There's a striking contrast between the lack of effect on ambulatory function as measured by the timed 25-foot walk test, and the effects on upper extremity function as measured by the 9-hole peg test," she said.

There are currently no approved therapies for primary progressive or secondary progressive MS -- although data reported here on ocrelizumab, an investigational B-cell targeting therapy by Roche/Genentech, suggested the drug has some efficacy in primary progressive disease.

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