Most Read Articles
Audrey Abella, 20 Dec 2019
The combination of the immunomodulatory agent lenalidomide and the monoclonal antibody rituximab (R2) proved effective and safe in individuals ≥70 years with relapsed/refractory indolent non-Hodgkin lymphoma (R/R iNHL) compared with rituximab alone, according to a post hoc analysis of the phase III AUGMENT* trial presented at ASH 2019. 
26 Nov 2019
Podcast: Professor R. Scott Wright speaks about the potential role of inclisiran in providing durable reductions in LDL-cholesterol levels in patients with atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease.
Jairia Dela Cruz, 12 Dec 2019
Use of isatuximab (Isa) in combination with pomalidomide and dexamethasone (PomDex) appears to lead to more favourable outcomes in elderly patients with relapsed/refractory multiple myeloma (RRMM) as compared with PomDex alone, according to the results of a subgroup analysis of the ICARIA-MM trial presented at the 61st Annual Meeting of the American Society of Hematology (ASH 2019).
Elaine Soliven, 26 Dec 2019
Adding epoetin alfa (EA) to lenalidomide significantly helps achieve major erythroid response (MER) in patients with erythropoietin (Epo)-refractory, lower risk non-deletion 5q (non-del(5q)) myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) compared with lenalidomide alone, according to the final results of the E2905* trial presented at ASH 2019.

Similar cancer incidence in RA patients treated with tocilizumab or TNF inhibitors

Roshini Claire Anthony
27 Jun 2018

Patients with rheumatoid arthritis have a similar incidence of cancer regardless of whether they are treated with tocilizumab or tumour necrosis factor (TNF) inhibitors, according to a study presented at EULAR 2018.

“This study found no difference in the risk of malignancy, excluding non-melanoma skin cancer, in patients with rheumatoid arthritis who newly switched to tocilizumab versus TNF inhibitors from a different TNF inhibitor, abatacept, or tofacitinib,” said study lead author Associate Professor Seoyoung C. Kim from Brigham and Women’s Hospital-Harvard Medical School in Boston, Massachusetts, US.

Using data from three US healthcare claims databases from 2010 to 2015, researchers identified patients aged ≥18 years with rheumatoid arthritis who had recently initiated treatment with tocilizumab (n=10,393) and propensity score matched them to patients who had recently initiated treatment with TNF inhibitors (n=26,357) following treatment failure with abatacept, tofacitinib, or a different TNF inhibitor.

Patients were followed-up until treatment discontinuation, outcome incidence, disenrollment, death, or end of study. Over the study period, 118 malignancies developed among patients who initiated tocilizumab and 322 among patients who initiated TNF inhibitors.  

The incidence rate of malignancy ranged from 0.81 to 2.18 per 100 person-years among patients who initiated tocilizumab and 0.98 to 2.16 per 100 person-years among patients who initiated TNF inhibitors. [EULAR 2018, abstract OP0002]

Patients who initiated treatment with tocilizumab had a comparable risk of incident cancer with patients who initiated treatment with TNF inhibitors across the three databases (hazard ratio, 0.92, 95 percent confidence interval, 0.74–1.14).

Analyses according to cancer subtype (pertaining to the 10 most commonly occurring cancers [breast, colorectal, bladder, kidney, lung, thyroid, prostate, and uterine cancer, melanoma, and non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma] as well as leukaemia and human papillomavirus-related cancers) revealed similar results to the main finding.

“Our study is one of a few to investigate head-to-head comparisons of malignancy risk between different types of biologics in rheumatoid arthritis,” said Kim.

“The risk of malignancy among patients with rheumatoid arthritis has been of ongoing interest,” said Professor Robert Landewé, Chairperson of the EULAR 2018 Scientific Programme Committee. “With more biologic treatment options available and earlier initiation of therapy, it is important to understand the risk of malignancies in patients with rheumatoid arthritis,” he said.

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Most Read Articles
Audrey Abella, 20 Dec 2019
The combination of the immunomodulatory agent lenalidomide and the monoclonal antibody rituximab (R2) proved effective and safe in individuals ≥70 years with relapsed/refractory indolent non-Hodgkin lymphoma (R/R iNHL) compared with rituximab alone, according to a post hoc analysis of the phase III AUGMENT* trial presented at ASH 2019. 
26 Nov 2019
Podcast: Professor R. Scott Wright speaks about the potential role of inclisiran in providing durable reductions in LDL-cholesterol levels in patients with atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease.
Jairia Dela Cruz, 12 Dec 2019
Use of isatuximab (Isa) in combination with pomalidomide and dexamethasone (PomDex) appears to lead to more favourable outcomes in elderly patients with relapsed/refractory multiple myeloma (RRMM) as compared with PomDex alone, according to the results of a subgroup analysis of the ICARIA-MM trial presented at the 61st Annual Meeting of the American Society of Hematology (ASH 2019).
Elaine Soliven, 26 Dec 2019
Adding epoetin alfa (EA) to lenalidomide significantly helps achieve major erythroid response (MER) in patients with erythropoietin (Epo)-refractory, lower risk non-deletion 5q (non-del(5q)) myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) compared with lenalidomide alone, according to the final results of the E2905* trial presented at ASH 2019.