Possible expanded use of beta interferon
Although the scientific evaluation including the data is still missing, an expansion of the area of application for beta-interferon 1b in the treatment of multiple sclerosis may be emerging. A European study in 32 clinics for the therapy of a certain form of MS (secondary progressive) apparently brought such significant results using the drug that even those patients who originally received placebo are offered the real drug. So far, beta interferon has been used in relapsing forms of multiple sclerosis. The rate of relapses occurring annually was reduced by around a third through the use of interferon. The current registration of the drug with the area of application is also based on this.
The new study included 718 patients between the ages of 18 and 55 with secondary progressive multiple sclerosis. In some people with MS, the initially relapsing disease progresses to a stage in which the symptoms (disorders of movement, paralysis) slowly and steadily worsen. The sick received eight million units every other day. An interim evaluation was scheduled after two years. It is happening now.
If the results are available in the scientific evaluation, the area of application of beta-interferon 1b could be extended to patients with secondary progressive MS. But first the facts really have to be available.