European/Canadian multicenter, double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled study of the effects of glatiramer acetate on magnetic resonance imaging—measured disease activity and burden in patients with relapsing multiple sclerosis. European/Canadian Glatiramer Acetate Study Group

G Comi, M Filippi, J S Wolinsky
Annals of Neurology 2001, 49 (3): 290-7
Two prior double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomized trials demonstrated that glatiramer acetate (GA) reduces relapse rates in patients with relapsing remitting multiple sclerosis (RRMS). This study was designed to determine the effect, onset, and durability of any effect of GA on disease activity monitored with magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) in patients with RRMS. Two hundred thirty-nine eligible patients were randomized to receive either 20 mg GA (n = 119) or placebo (n = 120) by daily subcutaneous injection. Eligibility required one or more relapses in the 2 years before entry and at least one enhancing lesion on a screening MRI. The study was a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled phase during which all patients studied underwent monthly MRI scans and clinical assessments over 9 months. The primary outcome measure was the total number of enhancing lesions on T1-weighted images. Secondary outcome measures included the proportion of patients with enhancing lesions, the number of new enhancing lesions and change in their volume; the number of new lesions detected on T2-weighted images and change in their volume, and the change in volume of hypointense lesions seen on unenhanced T1-weighted images. Clinical measures of disease activity were also evaluated. The active treatment and placebo groups were comparable at entry for all demographic, clinical, and MRI variables. Treatment with GA showed a significant reduction in the total number of enhancing lesions compared with placebo (-10.8, 95% confidence interval -18.0 to -3.7; p = 0.003). Consistent differences favoring treatment with GA were seen for almost all secondary end points examined: number of new enhancing lesions (p < 0.003), monthly change in the volume of enhancing lesions (p = 0.01), and change in volume (p = 0.006) and number of new lesions seen on T2-weighted images (p < 0.003). The relapse rate was also significantly reduced by 33% for GA-treated patients (p = 0.012). All effects increased over time. Glatiramer acetate significantly reduced MRI-measured disease activity and burden.

Full Text Links

Find Full Text Links for this Article


You are not logged in. Sign Up or Log In to join the discussion.

Related Papers

Remove bar
Read by QxMD icon Read

Save your favorite articles in one place with a free QxMD account.


Search Tips

Use Boolean operators: AND/OR

diabetic AND foot
diabetes OR diabetic

Exclude a word using the 'minus' sign

Virchow -triad

Use Parentheses

water AND (cup OR glass)

Add an asterisk (*) at end of a word to include word stems

Neuro* will search for Neurology, Neuroscientist, Neurological, and so on

Use quotes to search for an exact phrase

"primary prevention of cancer"
(heart or cardiac or cardio*) AND arrest -"American Heart Association"