Genentech‘s Ocrevus (ocrelizumab), approved in March 2017, has fueled a sea change in the treatment of multiple sclerosis (MS) patients in the U.S., leading to an increased interest in disease-modifying therapies (DMTs) for progressive forms of MS.
Now, other potential treatment choices for progressive MS forms will likely follow, including Novartis’ investigative oral treatment siponimod (BAF312), MedDay Pharmaceuticals‘ MD-1003, and AB Science‘s masitinib.
There could also be label expansions of other treatments, such as Genzyme‘s Lemtrada (alemtuzumab) or Merck KGaA’s (known as EMD Serono in the U.S. and Canada) Mavenclad (cladribine), according to a news report from Spherix Global Insights.
The report, titled “RealWorld Dynamix: Progressive Forms of Multiple Sclerosis US,” includes the feedback of around 200 U.S. neurologists combined with large-scale patient records of more than 600 patients diagnosed with progressive forms of MS — primary progressive MS (PPMS), active secondary progressive MS (SPMS), and not-active SPMS.
As previously reported and now confirmed in the updated Spherix report, the number of neurologists prescribing Ocrevus as a first-line treatment for PPMS has stabilized and is expected to remain like this for the foreseeable future.
Neurologists looking for alternatives to Ocrevus will most likely choose from the investigative therapies MD-1003, from MedDay Pharmaceuticals, or mastinib, being developed by AB Science.
Nonetheless, the upcoming trials for Ocrevus in PPMS patients with higher disability scores could encourage the broader use of Ocrevus among PPMS patients before MD-1003 or masitinib are in the market. The same applies for Lemtrada and Mavenclad.
Ocrevus has seen an increase as a therapy for active SPMS, which is now closer to that for relapsing-remitting MS (RRMS).
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