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Ann Neurol. 2010 Sep;68(3):392-5. doi: 10.1002/ana.22074.

Natalizumab drug holiday in multiple sclerosis: poorly tolerated.

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Department of Neurology, MS Center Amsterdam, VU University Medical Center, Amsterdam, the Netherlands.


It has been suggested that natalizumab-associated progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy may be prevented by structured interruptions of treatment. Evidence supporting such a drug holiday is not yet available. Here we present initial observations in 10 multiple sclerosis patients who were stringently monitored up to 6 months after discontinuation of the infusions. Cumulatively, a combination of clinical relapse and new and/or enhanced lesions on magnetic resonance imaging had occurred in 7 of 10 patients. Although numbers are small, our data suggest that in patients who were switched to natalizumab because of disease activity despite first-line treatment, a natalizumab drug holiday without reinstatement of alternate disease-modifying therapy is poorly tolerated.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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