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Journal of Neurology

, Volume 262, Issue 5, pp 1115–1119 | Cite as

Efficacy and safety of rituximab for myasthenia gravis: a systematic review and meta-analysis

  • Raffaele Iorio
  • Valentina Damato
  • Paolo Emilio Alboini
  • Amelia Evoli
Review

Abstract

Myasthenia gravis is an autoimmune disorder of the neuromuscular junction caused by circulating antibodies specif ic for the post-synaptic acetylcholine receptor or, in a minority of cases, for the muscle-specific tyrosine-kinase and the low-density lipoprotein receptor-related protein 4. A wide range of symptomatic and immunosuppressive treatments is currently available for MG patients with variable outcome. However, most immunosuppressive treatments are characterized by delayed onset of action and in some cases are not sufficient to induce stable remission of the disease. Rituximab (RTX) is a chimaeric monoclonal antibody specific for the CD20 B-cell surface antigen. Recent studies have provided evidence that RTX may be an effective treatment for patients with myasthenia gravis (MG) who are refractory to standardized immunosuppressive therapy. We performed a systematic review and a meta-analysis of the efficacy and safety of RTX in myasthenia gravis considering the potential predictive factors related to patients’ response to RTX in this disease.

Keywords

Rituximab Myasthenia gravis Immunotherapy Antibodies 

Notes

Conflicts of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Raffaele Iorio
    • 1
  • Valentina Damato
    • 2
  • Paolo Emilio Alboini
    • 2
  • Amelia Evoli
    • 2
  1. 1.Don Carlo Gnocchi ONLUS FoundationMilanItaly
  2. 2.Institute of Neurology, Department of Geriatrics, Neurosciences and OrthopedicsCatholic UniversityRomeItaly

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