rituximab

Rituximab Effects Evident at Low Dose, Persist After Treatment Stops

Rituximab shows long-term benefits, even among people with relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis (RRMS) and clinically isolated syndrome (CIS) who stopped its use or reduced their dose, a study reported. Researchers found little evidence of disease reactivation among patients who discontinued the medication, and an adequate inflammatory disease suppression…

Rituximab Seen to Affect How B-cells Return After Treatment Stops

Rituximab, an investigational B-cell depletion therapy that target CD20 to treat people with multiple sclerosis (MS), has significant effects on the characteristics of B-cells that return after treatment is stopped, with cells being less mature yet more activated toward a pro-inflammatory state, a study showed. Treatment also…

Restarting Rituxan: One Down, and a Lifetime to Go

Last week, I again started my twice-annual infusion of Rituxan (rituximab). After 384 days without my disease-modifying therapy, my team decided I could no longer wait. In its absence, my symptomology had worsened. Halting progression trumped a pandemic, and with personal protective equipment in place, I begin…

Manifesting Change with SPMS

The state of our world lies heavy on my shoulders. I worry about and miss my family. Our geographical distance, although unchanged, seems to have grown exponentially. Is everyone so far, or am I so very confined? I understand how a prisoner in solitary confinement finds his own perception…

#ACTRIMS2020 – 3 Ways to Treat MS by Altering Gut Microbiome Under Study

Modulating the bacteria that reside in the gut by treating multiple sclerosis (MS) patients with probiotics, fecal transplants, or gut-related microRNAs may help to ease inflammation and disease severity, researchers with Brigham and Women’s Hospital suggest. Howard Weiner, MD, a group leader at the hospital, presented his team’s findings on…

The Rise of Superbugs, Antibiotic Resistance, and MS

I am living with an unenviable reality. An antibiotic-resistant, hospital-acquired infection that I developed two decades ago has reappeared. Before my multiple sclerosis diagnosis, I had a spinal cord stimulator implanted for pain control. Although the stimulator was removed shortly afterward, the infection remained. This infection presents itself when…

Stem Cells Versus DMTs: MS Treatments Go Head to Head

People with multiple sclerosis have been waiting for this: A full-scale clinical trial testing the effectiveness of stem cell transplantation as an MS treatment. The trial is being conducted by the U.S. National Institutes of Health, and it’s enrolling people with MS at several centers in the United States and…

Filtering Ads and Choosing What’s Best

I remember a time without televised ads promoting medication. We had access to information through our physician or a card catalog. Pharmaceuticals are now a mainstay on our airwaves. And although prevalent, these ads previously had been inapplicable to me. Until now. An ad for Ocrevus (ocrelizumab) aired a…

MS News that Caught My Eye Last Week: Rituximab vs. Ocrevus

In this week’s column, I’ve changed the format a little to focus on one subject: rituximab. This is an approved cancer medication that some U.S. neurologists use as an off-label treatment for multiple sclerosis (MS). Rituximab is similar to Ocrevus (ocrelizumab). When the latter disease-modifying therapy (DMT) became available in…

#ECTRIMS2019 – Is Rituximab a Reasonable Option for MS Patients?

Editor’s note: This is the first story in a three-part report examining the question, “Is rituximab a reasonable alternative treatment for MS?”, which was a topic discussed at this year’s Congress of the European Committee for Treatment and Research in Multiple Sclerosis (ECTRIMS). Here, we provide a synopsis of…

MS News that Caught My Eye Last Week: Rituximab Helps Reverse Boy’s MS, Top Secondary DMTs in Europe, Tricking Remyelination, Early MS Treatment Strategies

Rituximab Leads to ‘Dramatic’ Recovery in Boy with Aggressive RRMS, Case Study Reports I dislike using adjectives such as “dramatic” when describing treatment results. I think they frequently blow things out of proportion. However, after reading about how this young boy in Greece responded to Rituximab as a “rescue…

Autoimmune Complications Associated with Lemtrada Solved Using Anti-CD20 Therapies, Case Studies Suggest

Relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis (RRMS) patients treated with Lemtrada (alemtuzumab) may develop additional (secondary) autoimmune reactions. Anti-CD20 therapies, including rituximab or Ocrevus (ocrelizumab), are a potential treatment for Lemtrada-associated autoimmune complications in patients who fail to respond to other conventional immunotherapies, according to a case report about two women in…