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Buenos Aires, Argentina

Mysler E.,Organizacion Medica de Investigacion
Current Rheumatology Reports | Year: 2015

The European Medicines Agency’s recent approval of biosimilars and their sudden appearance on the market will revolutionize the way physicians treat the severe conditions for which biologics have had a major impact. In the field of rheumatology, these agents are especially important because most new treatments are based on this kind of medication and because patents on the original drugs are expiring. To use these new medications, the treating physician must read and understand the clinical trials related to biosimilars. These studies are not the typical superiority trials in which new agents are compared with standard treatment; rather, they evaluate different formulas to determine whether they are no better or worse. This article summarizes the clinical aspects of drug development with regard to the efficacy and safety of these new medications. © 2015, Springer Science+Business Media New York.

Keiserman M.,University of Porto | Handa R.,Apollo Indraprastha Hospitals | Xibille-Friedmann D.,Autonomous University of the State of Morelos | Mysler E.,Organizacion Medica de Investigacion | And 2 more authors.
Expert Review of Clinical Immunology | Year: 2014

Biologic therapies, predominantly TNF-α inhibitors, have revolutionized the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis (RA). However, their clinical utility can be limited by the development of antidrug antibodies (ADAs). Immunogenicity is a complex phenomenon related to various drug, disease, and patient characteristics, and may be more common with the monoclonal antibodies than with etanercept, a soluble TNF receptor-Fc immunoglobulin fusion protein. Neutralizing antibodies-those that hinder bioactivity by preventing drug molecules from binding to TNF-are correlated with reduced serum drug concentrations, loss of therapeutic response, adverse events, and treatment discontinuation. Cost-effective use of these agents will depend on further research into drug and ADA assays, and how they should guide dose reduction or switching strategies. © 2014 Informa UK, Ltd.

Castaneda-Hernandez G.,National Polytechnic Institute of Mexico | Szekanecz Z.,Debrecen University | Mysler E.,Organizacion Medica de Investigacion | Azevedo V.F.,Federal University of Parana | And 4 more authors.
Joint Bone Spine | Year: 2014

A biosimilar is a biopharmaceutical product intended to be comparable to a previously licensed biopharmaceutical agent. The goal of such products is to increase the accessibility of biopharmaceutical therapy for rheumatoid arthritis by reducing costs. They are not like generic drugs, in that they may differ from the reference products in manufacturing, composition, and formulation. Regulatory authorities strive to ensure the absence of clinically meaningful differences between biosimilars and their reference drugs. However, small molecular differences may potentially affect pharmacodynamics (including affinity), pharmacokinetics, and immunogenicity. Intended copies are non-innovator biopharmaceutical products that, unlike biosimilars, do not have enough clinical evidence to demonstrate biosimilarity. For approval of a biosimilar, most countries require preclinical and clinical studies demonstrating comparability with the reference drug. The margin for determining equivalence or non-inferiority is determined on a case-by-case basis in each country, as there are no general criteria. The European Medicines Agency and US Food and Drug Administration have stringent regulatory processes to ensure comparability of biosimilars with their reference drugs. There are also post-marketing surveillance requirements to monitor safety. Only one biosimilar, CT-P13, has been approved for rheumatoid arthritis. However, in countries with less stringent regulation, intended copies are being commercialized and safety problems have been documented. Consequently, in such countries, there is an urgent need for appropriate regulatory processes to be established. Attempts to close the affordability gap of biopharmaceuticals should not open another gap between patients treated with an innovator drug and an intended copy. © 2014 Société française de rhumatologie.

Petri M.,Johns Hopkins University | Wallace D.J.,Cedars Sinai Medical Center | Spindler A.,Centro Medico Privado Of Reumatologia | Chindalore V.,Pinnacle Research Group | And 9 more authors.
Arthritis and Rheumatism | Year: 2013

Objective To evaluate the safety and tolerability of multiple intravenous (IV) doses of sifalimumab in adults with moderate-to-severe systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). Methods In this multicenter, double-blind, placebo-controlled, sequential dose-escalation study, patients were randomized 3:1 to receive IV sifalimumab (0.3, 1.0, 3.0, or 10.0 mg/kg) or placebo every 2 weeks to week 26, then followed up for 24 weeks. Safety assessment included recording of treatment-emergent adverse events (AEs) and serious AEs. Pharmacokinetics, immunogenicity, and pharmacodynamics were evaluated, and disease activity was assessed. Results Of 161 patients, 121 received sifalimumab (26 received 0.3 mg/kg; 25, 1.0 mg/kg; 27, 3.0 mg/kg; and 43, 10 mg/kg) and 40 received placebo. Patients were predominantly female (95.7%). At baseline, patients had moderate-to-severe disease activity (mean SLE Disease Activity Index score 11.0), and most (75.2%) had a high type I interferon (IFN) gene signature. In the sifalimumab group versus the placebo group, the incidence of ≥1 treatment-emergent AE was 92.6% versus 95.0%, ≥1 serious AE was 22.3% versus 27.5%, and ≥1 infection was 67.8% versus 62.5%; discontinuations due to AEs occurred in 9.1% versus 7.5%, and death occurred in 3.3% (n = 4) versus 2.5% (n = 1). Serum sifalimumab concentrations increased in a linear and dose-proportional manner. Inhibition of the type I IFN gene signature was sustained during treatment in patients with a high baseline signature. No statistically significant differences in clinical activity (SLEDAI and British Isles Lupus Assessment Group score) between sifalimumab and placebo were observed. However, when adjusted for excess burst steroids, SLEDAI change from baseline showed a positive trend over time. A trend toward normal complement C3 or C4 level at week 26 was seen in the sifalimumab groups compared with baseline. Conclusion The observed safety/tolerability and clinical activity profile of sifalimumab support its continued clinical development for SLE. Copyright © 2013 by the American College of Rheumatology.

Burmester G.R.,Charite - Medical University of Berlin | Burmester G.R.,Humboldt University of Berlin | Rubbert-Roth A.,University of Cologne | Cantagrel A.,Toulouse 1 University Capitole | And 10 more authors.
Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases | Year: 2014

Objectives This study compared the efficacy and safety of subcutaneous (SC) versus intravenous (IV) formulations of tocilizumab in patients with rheumatoid arthritis with an inadequate response to disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs (DMARD). Methods Patients (n=1262) were randomly assigned to receive tocilizumab-SC 162 mg weekly+placebo-IV every 4 weeks or tocilizumab-IV 8 mg/kg every 4 weeks+placebo-SC weekly in combination with traditional DMARD. The primary outcome was to demonstrate the non-inferiority of tocilizumab-SC to tocilizumab-IV with regard to the proportion of patients in each group achieving an American College of Rheumatology (ACR) 20 response at week 24 using a 12% non-inferiority margin (NIM). Secondary outcomes were disease activity score using 28 joints (DAS28), ACR responses, health assessment questionnaire scores and safety assessments. Results At week 24, 69.4% (95% CI 65.5 to 73.2) of tocilizumab-SC-treated patients versus 73.4% (95% CI 69.6 to 77.1) of tocilizumab-IV-treated patients achieved an ACR20 response (weighted difference between groups -4.0%, 95% CI -9.2 to 1.2); the 12% NIM was met. ACR50/70 responses, DAS28 and physical function improvements were comparable between the tocilizumab- SC and tocilizumab-IV groups. The safety profiles of tocilizumab-SC and tocilizumab-IV were similar, and the most common adverse event was infection. Injection-site reactions (ISR) occurred more frequently in the tocilizumab- SC group than in the tocilizumab-IV (placebo-SC) group. No anaphylaxis was reported over the 24 weeks. Conclusions Tocilizumab-SC 162 mg weekly demonstrated comparable efficacy to tocilizumab-IV 8 mg/kg. The safety profile of tocilizumab-SC is consistent with the known and well-established safety profile of tocilizumab-IV, with the exception of a higher incidence of ISR, which were more common with tocilizumab-SC administration.

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