While neurologists favor Novartis‘ Mayzent (siponimod) for people with active secondary progressive multiple sclerosis (SPMS) and transitioning relapsing-remitting MS (RRMS), EMD Serono‘s Mavenclad (cladribine) could serve as a first option for patients with RRMS who failed initial therapy, Spherix Global Insights says in its latest report.
In the opinion of nearly 100 U.S. neurologists surveyed by Spherix — and reported in its most recent RealTime Dynamix: Multiple Sclerosis (US) quarterly analysis — the use of these newest DMTs for active SPMS and patients transitioning from RRMS “will be a given for both brands,” the company states in a press release. Both EMD Serono and Novartis have been heavily advocating their medicines’ use for these two overlapping MS populations (RRMS and active SPMS).
“However, interest in and opportunity for Mayzent outpaces Mavenclad,” Spherix’s data found, with more than one in five patients recently prescribed the Novartis therapy by neurologists.
According to Spherix’s report, EMD Serono could go around this by shifting its focus to RRMS patients who are changing medication for the first time, after an initial therapy failed to work.
“Early launch perceptions and uptake patterns support an ideal first switch position for Mavenclad,” Spherix said.
Neurologists who adopted EMD Serono’s medicine for an earlier stage of RRMS are more willing to prescribe Mavenclad to patients in need of a change in treatment, compared with non-prescribers. The survey showed more than half of these Mavenclad-treated individuals were switched from typical first-line DMTs, including Sanofi Genzyme‘s Aubagio (teriflunomide), Biogen‘s Tecfidera (dimethyl fumarate), and injectable DMTs.
In Spherix’s view, positioning Mavenclad use as an early switch option could “win prescriber loyalty and payer favor.” This could “ease market access barriers,” as neurologists consider a change in medications due to lack of efficacy the “easiest scenario for which to obtain payer approval.”
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