Efficacy and Safety Outcomes with Diroximel Fumarate After Switching from Prior Therapies or Continuing on DRF: Results from the Phase 3 EVOLVE-MS-1 Study

Adv Ther. 2022 Apr;39(4):1810-1831. doi: 10.1007/s12325-022-02068-7. Epub 2022 Feb 24.


Introduction: Diroximel fumarate (DRF) is an oral fumarate for relapsing multiple sclerosis (MS) with the same active metabolite as dimethyl fumarate (DMF). DRF has a safety/efficacy profile similar to DMF but with improved gastrointestinal (GI) tolerability and low (< 1%) treatment discontinuation due to GI adverse events (AEs). Efficacy and safety outcomes in patients who switched to DRF from other disease-modifying therapies (DMTs) have not been evaluated.

Methods: EVOLVE-MS-1 is an ongoing, 2-year, open-label, phase 3 study of DRF in adults with relapsing-remitting MS. Patients either entered as newly enrolled to DRF trials, or from the 5-week, randomized, head-to-head, phase 3 EVOLVE-MS-2 study of DRF and DMF. This analysis evaluated safety and GI tolerability in patients continuing on DRF (DRF-rollover) or switching from DMF (DMF-rollover) following EVOLVE-MS-2. Safety and efficacy were evaluated in a subset of newly enrolled patients who had received prior glatiramer acetate (GA; GA/DRF) or interferons (IFN; IFN/DRF) as their most recent DMT, prior to switching to DRF in EVOLVE-MS-1.

Results: As of September 1, 2020, 1057 patients were enrolled in EVOLVE-MS-1, including 166, 182, 239, and 225 patients in the GA/DRF, IFN/DRF, DRF-rollover, and DMF-rollover groups, respectively. Treatment discontinuation due to GI AEs was < 1% in all groups. GA/DRF and IFN/DRF patients experienced improvements from baseline in clinical and radiological efficacy outcomes, including significantly reduced annualized relapse rates. Rollover patients had low rates of new or recurrent GI AEs (DRF-rollover, 26.8%/4.2%; DMF-rollover, 27.1%/4.9%).

Conclusion: After 2 years of DRF exposure, patients with prior GA, IFN, or fumarate treatment had safety outcomes consistent with previous fumarate studies. Efficacy in patients with prior GA or IFN treatment was consistent with previous fumarate studies. The data suggest that transition to DRF from GA, IFN, or DMF is a reasonable treatment strategy, with low rates of discontinuation due to GI AEs.

Trial registration: ClinicalTrials.gov (NCT02634307). INFOGRAPHIC.

Keywords: Dimethyl fumarate; Diroximel fumarate; Efficacy; Glatiramer acetate; Interferon; Multiple sclerosis; Relapsing–remitting multiple sclerosis; Safety; Tolerability.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial, Phase III
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Dimethyl Fumarate* / adverse effects
  • Fumarates* / adverse effects
  • Humans
  • Immunosuppressive Agents / adverse effects
  • Multiple Sclerosis, Relapsing-Remitting* / drug therapy
  • Recurrence


  • Fumarates
  • Immunosuppressive Agents
  • Dimethyl Fumarate

Associated data

  • ClinicalTrials.gov/NCT02634307