Tecfidera (dimethyl fumarate) is as safe and effective in Hispanic/Latino multiple sclerosis (MS) patients as it is in their non-Hispanic and non-Latino peers, three-year data from a real-world study show.
These interim findings, based on the largest group of Tecfidera-treated Hispanic and Latino MS patients studied to date, support the therapy’s benefits in a patient population often underrepresented in MS research.
This observational trial, called ESTEEM (NCT02047097), will run for two more years to further assess Tecfidera’s benefit-risk profile across different ethnicities.
The study, “Real-World Safety and Effectiveness of Dimethyl Fumarate in Hispanic or Latino Patients with Multiple Sclerosis: 3-Year Results from ESTEEM,” was published in the journal Neurology and Therapy.
Reasons behind these ethnic differences remain largely unknown, but a previous U.S. study showed that MS patients of Hispanic or African ancestry have higher levels of antibody-secreting cells, which may contribute to a more severe disease course.
Still, ethnic minority populations continue to be underrepresented in MS clinical trials and real-world studies.
“The underrepresentation of these populations leads to limited data on the effectiveness of treatments in these groups of patients and underscores the lack of an evidence-based approach used in treatment,” the researchers wrote.
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