In a nutshell
This study investigated the safety and effectiveness of switching to SB2 from infliximab (Remicade) in patients with rheumatoid arthritis.
They found that switching to SB2 from infliximab was well tolerated and effective at reducing disease activity.
Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a chronic disease that causes pain and inflammation in the joints. It is an autoimmune condition where the body’s immune system attacks the tissue in the joints. To treat RA, patients are given medication to reduce the body’s immune response.
There are many drugs used in the treatment of RA. One type of drugs are biologics, such as infliximab (INF). These treatments block proteins that are involved in inflammation. They are very effective, but are expensive to produce. There are new synthetic drugs that act similarly to biologics but are cheaper and easier to produce. These are called biosimilars. SB2 is a biosimilar that acts like INF. They work by blocking tumor necrosis factor (TNF) alpha, a compound that promotes inflammation. Whether or not SB2 is as effective as INF is still under investigation.
Methods & findings
This study investigated the safety and effectiveness of switching to SB2 from INF in patients with RA.
This study included 396 patients with moderate to severe RA. Patients were assigned to three groups. One group received INF for 78 weeks (INF/INF), another group received SB2 for 78 weeks (SB2/SB2) and the third group received INF for 54 weeks and then and switched to SB2 until week 78 (INF/SB2). Disease activity was measured in all patients. Adverse events were also recorded.
Patients who switched to SB2 from INF had similar reductions in disease activity compared to patients that received INF or SB2 alone. The number of adverse events in patients receiving INF/SB2 was similar to the other groups. Some adverse events that were reported include tuberculosis, nasopharyngitis, and worsening of RA symptoms.
The bottom line
This study concluded that switching to SB2 from infliximab was well tolerated and effective at reducing disease activity.
The fine print
This study predominantly included females (approximately 80%). The effect on males may differ and further studies may be needed to address this.
If you have any issues or concerns regarding rheumatoid arthritis treatment, please consult with your physician.
Published By :
Annals of the rheumatic diseases
Oct 17, 2017
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