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      Copolymer 1 reduces relapse rate and improves disability in relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis: results of a phase III multicenter, double-blind placebo-controlled trial. The Copolymer 1 Multiple Sclerosis Study Group.

      Neurology

      Adult, Disability Evaluation, Double-Blind Method, Drugs, Investigational, therapeutic use, Female, Humans, Male, Multiple Sclerosis, drug therapy, physiopathology, Peptides, Recurrence

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          Abstract

          We studied copolymer 1 (Copaxone) in a multicenter (11-university) phase III trial of patients with relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis (MS). Two hundred fifty-one patients were randomized to receive copolymer 1 (n = 125) or placebo (n = 126) at a dosage of 20 mg by daily subcutaneous injection for 2 years. The primary end point was a difference in the MS relapse rate. The final 2-year relapse rate was 1.19 +/- 0.13 for patients receiving copolymer 1 and 1.68 +/- 0.13 for those receiving placebo, a 29% reduction in favor of copolymer 1 (p = 0.007) (annualized rates = 0.59 for copolymer 1 and 0.84 for placebo). Trends in the proportion of relapse-free patients and median time to first relapse favored copolymer 1. Disability was measured by the Expanded Disability Status Scale (EDSS), using a two-neurologist (examining and treating) protocol. When the proportion of patients who improved, were unchanged, or worsened by > or = 1 EDSS step from baseline to conclusion (2 years) was evaluated, significantly more patients receiving copolymer 1 were found to have improved and more receiving placebo worsened (p = 0.037). Patient withdrawals were 19 (15.2%) from the copolymer 1 group and 17 (13.5%) from the placebo group at approximately the same intervals. The treatment was well tolerated. The most common adverse experience was an injection-site reaction. Rarely, a transient self-limited systemic reaction followed the injection in 15.2% of those receiving copolymer 1 and 3.2% of those receiving placebo.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

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          7617181

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