Interferon Beta and Glatiramer Acetate Therapy
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- McGraw, C.A. & Lublin, F.D. Neurotherapeutics (2013) 10: 2. doi:10.1007/s13311-012-0163-4
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Interferon beta and glatiramer acetate have been mainstays of treatment in relapsingremitting multiple sclerosis for two decades. Remarkable advances in our understanding of immune function and dysfunction as well as increasingly sophisticated clinical trial design have stemmed from efforts to better understand these drugs. In this chapter, we review the history of their development and elaborate on known and theorized mechanisms of action. We describe the pivotal clinical trials that have led to their widespread use. We evaluate the clinical use of the drugs including tolerability, side effects, and efficacy measures. Finally, we look to the future of interferon beta and glatiramer acetate in the context of an ever growing armamentarium of treatments for relapsing remitting multiple sclerosis.