Efficacy and safety of rasagiline in Chinese patients with early Parkinson's disease: a randomized, double-blind, parallel, placebo-controlled, fixed-dose study

Transl Neurodegener. 2018 Dec 6;7:32. doi: 10.1186/s40035-018-0137-5. eCollection 2018.


Background: Rasagiline is a monoamine oxidase-B inhibitor used for Parkinson's disease (PD) treatment, but its effectiveness on Chinese patients is unclear. This study aimed to evaluate the efficacy and safety of rasagiline monotherapy in Chinese patients with early PD.

Methods: A 26-weeks, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study has been performed at 15 sites in China and enrolled outpatients (≥35 years old) with idiopathic PD without a history of using any dopaminergic drugs. Participants were randomized 1:1 to receive rasagiline 1 mg once daily or placebo. The primary endpoint was the change of the Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale (UPDRS) total score from baseline to 26 weeks treatment. Secondary endpoints included changes in UPDRS subscale scores from part I to III. Health status was assessed with the PD Questionnaire (PDQ)-39 and EuroQol-Five-Dimension (EQ-5D) questionnaire. Safety profile was collected until 30 weeks after randomization.

Results: A total of 130 patients (n = 65/group) were recruited, and 127 (rasagiline, n = 64; placebo, n = 63) were included in the full analysis set. Baseline characteristics were comparable between the two groups. The decrease in the mean UPDRS total score was greater in the rasagiline group than in the placebo group (- 3.18 ± 0.95 vs. - 0.18 ± 0.98, P = 0.025), and the mean UPDRS part I non-motor symptoms score (- 0.54 ± 0.15 vs. -0.08 ± 0.15, P = 0.003) were significantly decreased in the rasagiline group compared with placebo treated patients. An improvement trend was observed in the active treatment group for the subscales evaluation with parts II and III, while the difference to placebo was not statistically significant. Life quality assessed by the EQ-5D visual analog scale improved in the rasagiline group but worsened in placebo treated patients. The overall incidence of treatment-emergent adverse events (AEs) was slightly lower in the rasagiline group (41.5%) than in the placebo group (46.2%).

Conclusions: Rasagiline is effective, safe, and well tolerated as monotherapy for the treatment of Chinese PD patients.

Trial registration: Clinicaltrials.gov: NCT01556165. Registered 13 Mar 2012.

Keywords: China; Monoamine oxidase inhibitor; Monotherapy; Parkinson’s disease; Rasagiline.

Associated data

  • ClinicalTrials.gov/NCT01556165