NICE say initial 'no' to ozanimod - but comments remain open

10 Feb 2021

The latest disease-modifying treatment for relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis (RRMS) has been rejected by NICE despite promising trials and approval in Scotland.

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) have declared that there is a lack of clarity on ozanimod's effect on someone's progression of disability. They also noted the range of other disease-modifying treatments (DMTs) currently available for RRMS, noting that ozanimod's efficacy by comparison is uncertain as there is no evidence comparing them.

The decision has been met with disappointment although there is hope that the decision might be swayed during the consultation period. Comments on the draft recommendations can be made via NICE's website; the deadline is 5pm on 12th February - this Friday.

More about ozanimod

The oral therapy ozanimod, brand name 'Zeposia', had successful phase 3 trials in both SUNBEAM and RADIANCE studies, testing the drug on over 2,600 adults. The results showed significant reduction in lesions and brain volume loss. Additionally, nine out of 10 patients showed no 3-month disability progression.

The drug was developed by Bristol Myers Squibb (BMS) and has just been accepted for use in Scotland by the Scottish Medicines Consortium who deemed it cost-effective for treating those with 'active' relapsing MS. The term refers to those people who have recently relapsed or have new lesions.

The drug is taken orally which could provide a positive solution to accessing treatment during the COVID pandemic, with no hospital attendance or staff resource required to administer it.

MS Academy reviewed the ECTRIMS session assessing ozanimod in more detail and the write up is available online.

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