Murdoch University Research Repository

Welcome to the Murdoch University Research Repository

The Murdoch University Research Repository is an open access digital collection of research
created by Murdoch University staff, researchers and postgraduate students.

Learn more

Response to treatment in NMOSD: the Australasian experience

Clarke, L., Bukhari, W., O'Gorman, C.M., Khalilidehkordi, E., Arnett, S., Woodhall, M., Prain, K.M., Parratt, J.D.E., Barnett, M.H., Marriott, M.P., McCombe, P.A., Sutton, I., Boggild, M., Brownlee, W., Carroll, W.M., Hodgkinson, S., Macdonell, R.A.L., Mason, D.F., Pereira, J., Slee, M., Das, C., Henderson, A.P.D., Kermode, A.G., Lechner-Scott, J., Waters, P., Sun, J. and Broadley, S.A. (2021) Response to treatment in NMOSD: the Australasian experience. Multiple Sclerosis and Related Disorders, 58 . Art. 103408.

Link to Published Version:
*Subscription may be required


Background: Neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorder (NMOSD) is associated with significant morbidity and mortality. Several therapies have been recommended for NMOSD and more recently clinical trials have demonstrated efficacy for three monoclonal antibody therapies. We present a retrospective observational study of treatment response in NMOSD.

Methods: This was a retrospective, unblinded, observational study of treatment efficacy for rituximab and traditional immunosuppressive therapy in patients with AQP4 antibody positive NMOSD. Treatment efficacy was assessed using annualised relapse rates (ARR), time to first relapse and expanded disability status scale (EDSS) scores.

Results: Complete relapse and treatment data were available for 43/68 (63%) of AQP4 antibody positive NMOSD cases covering 74 episodes of treatment. In a time to first relapse analysis rituximab showed a risk ratio of 0.23 (95% CI 0.08 – 0.65) when compared with no treatment and there was a non-significant reduction in ARR of 35% compared to pre-treatment. β-interferon (p = 0.0002) and cyclophosphamide (p = 0.0034) were associated with an increased ARR compared to pre-treatment. Rituximab (median 4.0 [range 0.0 – 7.0]; p = 0.042) and traditional immunosuppressive therapy (median 4.0 [range 0.0 – 8.0]; p = 0.016) were associated with a lower final EDSS compared to β-interferon (median 6.0 [range 4.0 – 7.5]).

Conclusions: These data provide additional support for the use of rituximab in preference to traditional immunosuppressive agents and MS disease modifying therapies as first line treatment of NMOSD.

NMOSD, neuromyelitis optica; AQP4, aquaporin-4 ARR, annualised relapse rate; EDSS, expanded disability status scale; CNS, central nervous system; MS, multiple sclerosis; SD, standard deviation; RR, relative risk; CI, confidence interval; LESCL, longitudinally extensive spinal cord lesion; IVMP, intravenous methylprednisolone; Rx, treatment; IRR, incidence rate ratio

Item Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation(s): Institute for Immunology and Infectious Diseases
Publisher: Elsevier B.V.
Copyright: © 2021 Published by Elsevier B.V.
Item Control Page Item Control Page