The SENTINEL study showed that the addition of natalizumab improved outcomes for patients with relapsing multiple sclerosis (MS) who had experienced disease activity while receiving interferon beta-1a (IFNbeta-1a) alone. Previously unreported secondary and tertiary magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) measures are presented here. Patients received natalizumab 300 mg (n=589) or placebo (n=582) intravenously every 4 weeks plus IFNbeta-1a 30 microg intramuscularly once weekly. Annual MRI scans allowed comparison of a range of MRI end points versus baseline. Over 2 years, 67% of patients receiving natalizumab plus IFNbeta-1a remained free of new or enlarging T2-lesions compared with 30% of patients receiving IFNbeta-1a alone. The mean change from baseline in T2 lesion volume over 2 years decreased in patients receiving natalizumab plus IFNbeta-1a and increased in those receiving IFNbeta-1a alone (-277.5mm(3) versus 525.6mm(3); p<0.001). Compared with IFNbeta-1a alone, add-on natalizumab therapy resulted in a smaller increase in mean T1-hypointense lesion volume after 2 years (1821.3mm(3) versus 2210.5mm(3); p<0.001), a smaller mean number of new T1-hypointense lesions over 2 years (2.3 versus 4.1; p<0.001), and a slower rate of brain atrophy during the second year of therapy (-0.31% versus -0.40%; p=0.020). Natalizumab add-on therapy reduced gadolinium-enhancing, T1-hypointense, and T2 MRI lesion activity and slowed brain atrophy progression in patients with relapsing MS who experienced disease activity despite treatment with IFNbeta-1a alone.
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