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Home Industry News Roche: Actemra first biologic drug to show superiority in RA

Roche: Actemra first biologic drug to show superiority in RA

17th June 2008

Roche has announced the publication of new data showing that Actemra (tocilizumab) is the first biologic drug that has shown superiority over the current standard of care in rheumatoid arthritis (RA).

The company reports the compound achieved a greater reduction in signs and symptoms of the disease, such as tender and swollen joints, measured at six months, making it the first biologic compound to show superiority over methotrexate.

Additionally, almost three times as many patients treated with the compound achieved disease remission measured as DAS28 of less than 2.6.

The humanised interleukin-6 receptor-inhibiting monoclonal antibody is currently being co-developed worldwide with Chugai, with the compound awaiting approval in the US and Europe.

William M Burns, chief executive officer of the pharma division of Roche, said: “The latest study data are encouraging news for patients suffering from the devastating effects of RA.

“As the first and only biologic treatment to demonstrate superiority to the current standard of care in early treatment for RA, we believe Actemra will offer more patients relief from their debilitating symptoms.”

He added that the compound gives patients an improved chance for early and long-lasting remission from RA.

Last month, Roche reported that Actemra can prevent structural damage to joints in patients with RA, a key measure of its efficacy.

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