Experimental Medications: Monoclonal Antibody Medications

Companies: Genzyme and Glenmark Pharmaceuticals

  • Administered via intravenous infusion
  • Vatelizumab is being studied in RRMS

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Vatelizumab is a humanized monoclonal antibody that targets VLA-2, a collagen-binding integrin expressed on activated lymphocytes. This is similar to the mechanism of action of natalizumab (Tysabri), although with a different molecular target. The precise mechanism of action of vatelizumab in MS is not known, although it is hypothesized to block VLA-2 on activated immune cells, preventing their involvement in areas of inflammation, and thus potentially reducing inflammatory events in MS.

The EMPIRE study,56 initiated in 2014, is a global phase IIa/IIb double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled study assessing the efficacy, safety and dose-response of vatelizumab in patients with active RRMS. The study duration is 12 weeks, and it is expected to enroll 168 patients at 55 sites in 10 countries. The study is expected to be completed in mid-2016.

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