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Kuhle, J.; Hardmeier, M.; Disanto, G.; Gugleta, K.; Ecsedi, M.; Lienert, C.; Amato, M. P.; Baum, K.; Buttmann, M.; Bayas, A.; Brassat, D.; Brochet, B.; Confavreux, C.; Edan, G.; Färkkilä, M.; Fredrikson, S.; Frontoni, M.; D'Hooghe, M.; Hutchinson, M.; Keyser, J. de; Kieseier, B. C.; Kümpfel, Tania; Rio, J.; Polman, C.; Roullet, E.; Stolz, C.; Vass, K.; Wandinger, K. P.; Kappos, L. (2016): A 10-year follow-up of the European multicenter trial of interferon β-1b in secondary-progressive multiple sclerosis. In: Multiple Sclerosis Journal, Vol. 22, No. 4: pp. 533-543


Objectives: To explore long-term effects of treatment and prognostic relevance of variables assessed at baseline and during the European secondary progressive multiple sclerosis (SPMS) trial of interferon beta 1b (IFNB-1b). Methods: We assessed 362 patients (60% female;median age 41 years;Expanded Disability Status Scale (EDSS): 5.5;51% randomized to IFNB-1b) for their EDSS and treatment history after 10 years. Non-parametric analysis of covariance (ANCOVA) and multivariate linear regression models were applied. Results: Median EDSS was 6.0 at the end of the randomized controlled trial (RCT), in the IFNB-1b and placebo groups, and 7.0 in long-term follow-up patients (those receiving IFNB-1b in the RCT were 6.5 and those receiving placebo in the RCT were 7.0;p = 0.086). 24 patients (6.6%) were deceased. The EDSS at baseline and the EDSS change during the RCT were the most important predictors of the EDSS 10 years later (partial R-2: 0.47). The ability to predict changes in EDSS 10 years after the RCT was limited (R-2: 0.12). Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) measures remained in the predictive models, but explained < 5% of the variability. Conclusions: The results from this analysis did not provide convincing evidence to support a favorable long-term outcome in those patients allocated IFNB-1b during the RCT, in our SPMS cohort. The progressive stage of the disease remains largely unpredictable by clinical and conventional MRI measures, so better prognostic markers are needed.