EAN Congress Highlights
Advancing MS Therapy: Addressing the Patient Experience

How can long-term understanding of established therapies be harnessed to improve the patient experience? In this virtual satellite symposium, Professors Til Menge, Anne-Katrin Pröbstel and Bart Van Wijmeersch discuss the latest updates to MS treatments, with a focus on individualising MS care to achieve clinically meaningful outcomes and improve patient experiences.

Chair’s introduction: Next steps for individualising MS care

How can long-term understanding of MS therapies facilitate advancements to further individualise MS care? In the following videos, Professor Til Menge discusses how experience with established MS therapies has led to significant improvements in patient outcomes, as well as allowing individualisation of treatment according to patient disease profiles, lifestyle needs and their current environment.

2:00 min

Long-term experience with established therapies

Explore recent data documenting how much MS management has improved, and the importance of tracking safety outcomes in the long-term.

1:28 min

Long-term data informs decision-making

Review how long-term data for established therapies impacts MS care and see the latest safety update on extended interval dosing of natalizumab in JCV antibody positive patients.

1:50 min

A new factor in individualising MS care

Discover the factors influencing individualised MS care, including the emerging consideration of immune health.

7:58 min

Watch the full introduction video

The presentation on "Next steps for individualising care" starts at 2:01 min.

Improving interferon beta further: Intramuscular peginterferon beta-1a

What are the possibilities with intramuscular (IM) administration of peginterferon beta-1a? In the following videos, Professor Til Menge explores the new data leading to the approval of IM peginterferon beta-1a and answers questions relating to changes to the interferon prescribing information, and new data relevant to the pandemic.

2:04 min

Interferons: Developments across 25 years

Review the milestones and increased therapeutic options over 25 years of experience with interferons, with the latest being IM peginterferon beta-1a.

1:13 min

IM PEG IFNβ-1a clinical data

Explore the latest clinical data on the bioequivalence of IM and SC peginterferon beta-1a, and evidence for reduced injection-site reactions experienced with IM administration.

2:47 min

Persistence with Q2W PEG IFNβ-1a

What data exist on the adherence and persistence to peginterferon beta-1a? Learn about the latest persistence data for interferons and effective strategies to decrease discontinuation rate.

2:06 min

Interferons and family planning

What data are available regarding the use of peginterferon beta-1a during pregnancy and the post-partum period? Learn about the latest guidance that interferon beta does not have to interrupt family planning, pregnancy or breastfeeding.

2:56 min

MS treatments and COVID-19

A particularly relevant question surrounding MS treatments today is their impact on COVID-19 infection and vaccination. Explore the current data on interferons, COVID-19 susceptibility and vaccination.

Tailoring fumarates to advance clinically meaningful outcomes

Can a next-generation fumarate advance clinically meaningful outcomes for MS patients? In the following videos, Professor Anne-Katrin Pröbstel explores the similarities and differences between dimethyl fumarate (DMF) and diroximel fumarate (DRF). The distinct chemical structure of DRF is hypothesised to improve gastrointestinal tolerability compared to DMF, leading to fewer interruptions to patients’ daily lives.*

1:57 min

Fumarate milestones

Experience in over 500,000 patients has led to guidance that maximises the benefit and safety of fumarates. Now scientists have turned to addressing whether they can make advances that will improve their tolerability and patient quality of life.

1:03 min

Similarities and differences of DMF and DRF

Explore the similarities and differences between DMF and DRF and how DRF’s different chemical structure is hypothesised to contribute to reduced gut irritation.

3:13 min

EVOLVE-MS-2 study

Learn about the design and outcomes of the EVOLVE-MS-2 trial, a Phase 3 study designed to assess gastrointestinal tolerability in patients treated with DRF versus DMF over 5 weeks.

1:14 min

DRF: A tailored fumarate

Review key points regarding use of DMF and the ways in which a next-generation fumarate has the potential to lead to clinically meaningful outcomes for MS patients.

1:51 min

Long-term efficacy and safety of DRF

Is there longer-term safety and efficacy data for DRF? Discover recent data from the EVOLVE-MS-1 study, an ongoing 96-week open-label single arm study.

1:37 min

Persistence and adherence with DRF

Are there real-world data available for adherence and persistence to DRF? Explore data from a US Specialty Pharmacy Program and learn about the Phase 4 EXPERIENCE study.

Enhancing convenience and flexibility with subcutaneous natalizumab

Can a subcutaneous (SC) route of administration of natalizumab enhance flexibility and convenience for patients versus intravenous (IV) administration? In the videos below, Professor Bart Van Wijmeersch discusses milestones in the 15 years of clinical experience with IV natalizumab, recently published data on natalizumab SC and the implications of its availability to patients and clinics.

1:41 min

Natalizumab milestones

Learn how the management of natalizumab has advanced during 15 years of clinical experience, and what was considered the logical next step to improve this therapy for patients.

3:53 min

Comparing SC and IV natalizumab

Explore data comparing IV to SC natalizumab administration, illustrating comparable serum concentrations and lymphocyte saturation.

1:33 min

Benefits of natalizumab SC

From his experience in the REFINE study, Professor Van Wijmeersch shares the benefits of SC natalizumab for patients, healthcare providers and practices.

2:21 min

Natalizumab SC starting and switching

What are the practicalities for initiating and/or switching patients to SC natalizumab? Learn the recommendations, and also why injection-site reactions from SC-administered monoclonal antibodies are generally minimal.

1:51 min

Data for Q6W dosing of natalizumab SC

Are there data available on every 6-week (Q6W) dosing of SC natalizumab? Learn about the NOVA study, which was recently amended to obtain data on Q6W dosing of SC natalizumab versus Q6W dosing of IV natalizumab.

1:50 min

Natalizumab and timing of vaccination

Are there special considerations regarding vaccination of natalizumab-treated patients? Discover how a vaccination study with IV natalizumab showed comparable responses to vaccines in patients treated, or not treated, with IV natalizumab.

0:43 min

Closing remarks

Professor Til Menge, Chair of the symposium, closes the session by briefly summarising the findings of the studies discussed and their implications for further advancing the individual patient experience of MS therapy.

For every product described in this educational program, always refer to the SmPC or product information approved in your country before prescribing, as the final recommendations of each local health authority can vary.

*Please be aware that, in June 2021, diroximel fumarate (DRF) is only available for use in the USA and Israel, and is not licenced for use in Europe.

Meet the Experts

Til Menge Til Menge is an attending neurologist at the Center for Neurology and Neuropsychiatry, LVR Clinic at Heinrich-Heine-University in Düsseldorf, Germany. He is also an adjunct professor in neuroimmunology. Since 2014 he has served as chief attending neurologist and since 2006 he has been head of the National Laboratory for testing neutralising antibodies against interferon-beta at the University of Düsseldorf. In 2019, Prof. Menge was awarded an American Academy of Neurology (AAN) Fellowship. He has participated in numerous clinical trials for MS therapies and has authored several reviews on current and novel treatments for MS. He is also an appointed member of the medical advisory board of the German MS Society. Professor Menge has received personal fees from Biogen, Novartis, Teva, Roche, Merck Serono and non-financial support from Biogen and Merck Serono.

Anne-Katrin PröbstelAnne-Katrin Pröbstel is a Swiss National Science Eccellenza Professor and attending neurologist at the Multiple Sclerosis Center at the University Hospital of Basel. She is head of the Autoimmune Encephalitis Clinic in the Neurology Department and Research Group Leader of the Experimental Neuroimmunology Group at the Department of Biomedicine at the University of Basel, as well as a core member of the Research Center for Clinical Neuroimmunology and Neuroscience Basel (RC2NB). She was recently awarded the Ellerman Award from the Swiss Neurological Society for her work on elucidating B cell functions and microbial contributions in MS and anti-MOG antibody associated disease. Professor Pröbstel has received honoraria for speaking and consulting from Biogen.

Bart Van WijmeerschBart Van Wijmeersch is a neurologist specialised in multiple sclerosis (MS). He is the medical director of the University MS Centre in Pelt where he leads the multidisciplinary MS team. He is also associate professor of Neurology at the University of Hasselt where he is involved in preclinical and clinical MS research at the Biomedical Institute (BIOMED/ REVAL). Additionally, Prof. Van Wijmeersch has an educational role in the Faculty of Medicine and Physiotherapy. He is a member of the Belgian Study Group of Multiple Sclerosis and was a co-founder and first president of the ParadigMS Foundation, an organisation dedicated to MS education to help improve clinical care for MS patients. In 2019, he received an honorary award from the Flemish government to acknowledge his scientific work. Professor Van Wijmeersch has received speaker, research and travel grants from Almirall, Actelion, Bayer, Biogen, Celgene/Bristol-Myers Squibb, Janssen Pharmaceuticals, Merck, Novartis, Roche, Sanofi-Genzyme and Teva.

Date of preparation: June 2021.