Sustained efficacy of natalizumab in the treatment of relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis independent of disease activity and disability at baseline: real-life data from a Swiss cohort

Clin Neuropharmacol. 2012 Mar-Apr;35(2):77-80. doi: 10.1097/WNF.0b013e31824644e6.


Objectives: Therapy for relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis with natalizumab (Tysabri; Biogen Idec) has been shown to be effective in the reduction of the clinical relapse rate and disability progression. However, real-life longitudinal data, including years before baseline, are rare.

Methods: An observational single-center study was carried out. We analyzed data from 64 consecutive patients with multiple sclerosis.

Results: After 1 year of treatment (n = 64), score on the Expanded Disability Status Scale (EDSS) decreased by 0.47 points (P = 0.047) and the annualized relapse rate (ARR) decreased by 82% (P < 0.001). After 2 years (n = 41), EDSS score was still reduced by 0.28 (not significant) and ARR was reduced by 69% (P < 0.001). After 3 years (n = 23), EDSS score was reduced by 0.26 (not significant), and ARR was reduced by 77% (P < 0.001). Reduction of EDSS score and ARR did not depend on baseline ARR (1-2 vs >2) or EDSS score and was not biased by exceptional high disease activity or relapses around baseline.

Conclusions: These real-life data reinforce that natalizumab is effective over years, reduces ARR, and stabilizes EDSS score independent of baseline ARR, baseline EDSS score, or baseline treatment.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized / therapeutic use*
  • Cohort Studies
  • Databases, Factual / trends
  • Disability Evaluation*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Multiple Sclerosis, Relapsing-Remitting / drug therapy*
  • Multiple Sclerosis, Relapsing-Remitting / epidemiology
  • Multiple Sclerosis, Relapsing-Remitting / physiopathology*
  • Natalizumab
  • Switzerland / epidemiology
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Young Adult


  • Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized
  • Natalizumab