EMD Serono to Present Data at CMSC Annual Meeting Showcasing Breadth of MS Portfolio and Commitment to Understanding How MS Impacts Patients
- 20 abstracts to be presented, including data on MAVENCLAD® (cladribine) tablets, Rebif® (interferon beta-1a) and investigational therapy evobrutinib

ROCKLAND, Mass., May 28, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- EMD Serono, the biopharmaceutical business of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, in the U.S. and Canada, will present data from its multiple sclerosis (MS) portfolio at the Consortium of Multiple Sclerosis Centers (CMSC) 2019 Annual Meeting, taking place May 28June 1, 2019 in Seattle, WA. The company will present a total of 20 abstracts (18 posters and two oral presentations), including new data on MAVENCLAD® (cladribine) tablets.

(PRNewsfoto/EMD Serono)

"We are dedicated to the continuation of research into our MS portfolio, and are excited to have a strong scientific presence at the CMSC Annual Meeting," said John Walsh, M.D., Vice President, Neurology and Immunology, U.S. Medical Affairs and Interim Head, North America Medical Affairs at EMD Serono. "Presenting these data reaffirms our commitment to fully understand the science of MS and ensure patient needs are at the forefront of MS care."

Meeting attendees can learn more about EMD Serono and its support of the MS community by visiting and participating in interactive activities at the congress, including "I'm Balancing MS," at booth #101. Individuals can work with their colleagues to create an original art piece depicting the neuroimmunology of MS. For each participant, EMD Serono will make a donation to the Foundation of CMSC's Workforce of the Future, which supports initiatives for young professionals who care for people with MS including The International Organization of Multiple Sclerosis Nurses (IOMSN). 

"EMD Serono has spearheaded this effort over the past two decades and their support has been instrumental in our progress," said June Halper, CEO of CMSC. "IOMSN is dedicated to sustain nursing care in MS throughout the world. Its growth and positive impact on MS care is due, in no small measure, to scholarship funding and support of its educational activities by its supporters." 

In addition, EMD Serono will honor World MS Day at CMSC on May 30 by showcasing multiple pieces of artwork from the MS On My Mind (MSOMM) initiative, including a final mural created at National MS Society Walk MS events across the country. The mural incorporates personalized messages from Walk MS attendees and will come together for the first time at CMSC. CMSC attendees can visit booth #236 to meet MSOMM creative director, Lydia Emily Archibald, and see her artwork inspired by submissions from those impacted by MS.  

Below is a selection of abstracts that have been accepted for presentation at CMSC 2019:

MAVENCLAD® (cladribine) tablets data

Title

Lead Author

Poster

Presentation/ Session

Severity and frequency of relapses in patients with relapsing-remitting MS treated with Cladribine Tablets in CLARITY and placebo in CLARITY Extension

Schippling S

DXT55

Thursday May 30

6:45 PM – 8:15 PM PT

Poster Session

Efficacy of Cladribine Tablets 3.5mg/kg in patients with relapsing multiple sclerosis aged above and below 45 years; CLARITY and CLARITY Extension

Giovannoni G

DXT53

Thursday May 30

6:45 PM – 8:15 PM PT

Poster Session

Rationale and feasibility of a phase IV study (CLASSIC MS) assessing long-term efficacy outcomes for patients with multiple sclerosis treated with Cladribine Tablets in the phase III trials

Boyko A

DXT35

Thursday May 30

6:45 PM – 8:15 PM PT

Poster Session

The effects of cladribine tablets on reduction in MRI lesions are consistent across subgroups in the ORACLE-MS study

Leist T

Oral Presentation

Friday May 31

3:20 PM - 3:40 PM PT

Washington State Convention
Center 611-612

Relapse outcomes in CLARITY EXT patients treated with cladribine tablets or placebo were comparable regardless of the between-trial bridging intervals

Rammohan K

DXT56

Thursday May 30

6:45 PM – 8:15 PM PT

Poster Session

Network meta-analysis of cladribine tablets versus alternative disease-modifying treatments for relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis: tolerability and quality-of-life outcomes

Singer B

DXT57

Thursday May 30

6:45 PM – 8:15 PM PT

Poster Session

CLARITY Extension: Long-term efficacy of cladribine tablets in patients with high disease activity at baseline following switch to placebo

Vermersch P

DXT31

Thursday May 30

6:45 PM – 8:15 PM PT

Poster Session

Updated safety analysis of cladribine tablets in the treatment of patients with multiple sclerosis

Cook S

DXT58

Thursday May 30

6:45 PM – 8:15 PM PT

Poster Session

Durability of NEDA-3 status in patients with relapsing multiple sclerosis receiving cladribine tablets: CLARITY Extension

Giovannoni G

DXT01

Thursday May 30

6:45 PM – 8:15 PM PT

Poster Session

Evobrutinib data

Efficacy and Safety of the Bruton's Tyrosine Kinase Inhibitor Evobrutinib (M2951) in Patients With Relapsing MS Over 48 Weeks: a Phase II Study

Montalban X

Oral Presentation

Friday May 31

3:40 PM - 4:00 PM PT

Washington State Convention
Center 611-612

Inhibition of Bruton's tyrosine kinase prevents inflammatory macrophage differentiation: a potential role in multiple sclerosis

Alankus YB

NDM05

Thursday May 30

6:45 PM – 8:15 PM PT

Poster Session

Rebif® (interferon beta-1a) data

Real-world infection rates and lymphocyte counts in patients ≥50 years with relapsing-remitting MS treated with subcutaneous interferon beta-1a or dimethyl fumarate

Hayward B

DXT68

 

Thursday May 30

6:45 PM – 8:15 PM PT

Poster Session 

Cumulative data from the European Interferon Beta Pregnancy Registry

Hellwig K

DXT66

Thursday May 30

6:45 PM – 8:15 PM PT

Poster Session

Dynamics of pseudoatrophy in relapsing-remitting MS patients treated with interferon beta-1a as assessed by monthly brain MRI

Battaglini M

DXT61

Thursday May 30

6:45 PM – 8:15 PM PT

Poster Session

MAGNIMS score–assessed disease activity predicts long-term activity-free status and disability progression in subcutaneous interferon beta-1a–treated patients

Sormani MP

DXT02

Thursday May 30

6:45 PM – 8:15 PM PT

Poster Session

HEOR data

Comorbidity and concomitant medication use among patients with multiple sclerosis newly initiating disease-modifying drugs

Nicholas J

DXT33

 

Thursday May 30

6:45 PM – 8:15 PM PT

Poster Session 

Gaps in treatment and treatment discontinuation among patients with multiple sclerosis newly initiating once- or twice-daily oral disease-modifying drugs

Nicholas J

DXT34

Thursday May 30

6:45 PM – 8:15 PM PT

Poster Session

Clinical and economic burden of non-adherence to oral disease-modifying drugs in patients with multiple sclerosis: a cost-consequence model

Nicholas J

DXT38

Thursday May 30

6:45 PM – 8:15 PM PT

Poster Session

Relapses, healthcare resource use, and costs among patients with multiple sclerosis taking maintenance (once-or twice-daily) oral disease-modifying drugs and experiencing lapses in therapy

Nicholas J

DXT32

Thursday May 30

6:45 PM – 8:15 PM PT

Poster Session

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About MAVENCLAD® 
MAVENCLAD, approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on March 29, 2019, is the first and only short-course oral therapy for the treatment of adults with relapsing-remitting disease (RRMS) and active secondary progressive disease (SPMS). Because of its safety profile, use of MAVENCLAD is generally recommended for patients who have had an inadequate response to, or are unable to tolerate, an alternate drug indicated for the treatment of multiple sclerosis (MS), and MAVENCLAD is not recommended for use in patients with clinically isolated syndrome (CIS). The approved dose of MAVENCLAD is 3.5 mg per kg body weight over two years, administered as one treatment course of 1.75 mg per kg per year, each consisting of two treatment weeks. The mechanism by which cladribine exerts its therapeutic effects in patients with multiple sclerosis has not been fully elucidated but is thought to involve cytotoxic effects on B and T lymphocytes through impairment of DNA synthesis, resulting in depletion of lymphocytes.

Because cladribine is cytotoxic, special handling and disposal instructions should be followed.

IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION

BOXED WARNING: MALIGNANCIES and RISK OF TERATOGENICITY

  • Treatment with MAVENCLAD may increase the risk of malignancy. MAVENCLAD is contraindicated in patients with current malignancy; evaluate the benefits and risks of the use of MAVENCLAD on an individual patient basis for patients with prior or increased risk of malignancy. Follow standard cancer screening guidelines in patients treated with MAVENCLAD.
  • MAVENCLAD is contraindicated for use in pregnant women and in women and men of reproductive potential who do not plan to use effective contraception because of the potential for fetal harm.

CONTRAINDICATIONS

  • Current malignancy.
  • Pregnancy, and women and men of reproductive potential who do not plan to use effective contraception during MAVENCLAD dosing and for 6 m after the last dose in each treatment course.
  • Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV).
  • Active chronic infections (e.g., hepatitis or tuberculosis).
  • History of hypersensitivity to cladribine.
  • Breastfeeding while taking MAVENCLAD and for 10 days after the last dose.

DOSING CONSIDERATIONS:  After the completion of 2 treatment courses, do not administer additional MAVENCLAD during the next 2 years.  The risk of malignancy with reinitiating MAVENCLAD more than 2 years after completion of 2 treatment courses has not been studied.

ADDITIONAL WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS

  • Lymphopenia: In clinical studies, 87% of MAVENCLAD-treated patients experienced lymphopenia. Concomitant use of MAVENCLAD with hematotoxic drugs may increase the risk of adverse reactions because of the additive hematological effects. Monitor lymphocyte counts before and during treatment, periodically thereafter, and when clinically indicated.
  • Infections: Infections occurred in 49% of MAVENCLAD-treated patients compared to 44% of patients treated with placebo in clinical studies. The most frequent serious infections included herpes zoster and pyelonephritis. Single fatal cases of tuberculosis and fulminant hepatitis B were reported in the clinical program. Administer live-attenuated or live vaccines at least 4 to 6 weeks prior to starting MAVENCLAD. Screen patients for latent infections; consider delaying treatment until infection is fully controlled. Vaccinate patients antibody-negative to varicella zoster virus prior to treatment. Monitor for infections.
  • Hematologic Toxicity: Mild to moderate decreases in neutrophil counts, hemoglobin levels, and platelet counts were observed. Severe decreases in neutrophil counts were observed in 3.6% of MAVENCLAD-treated patients, compared to 2.8% of placebo patients. Obtain complete blood count (CBC) with differential including lymphocyte count before and during treatment, periodically thereafter, and when clinically indicated.
  • Risk of Graft-versus-Host Disease With Blood Transfusions: Irradiation of cellular blood components is recommended.
  • Liver Injury: Obtain liver function tests prior to treatment. Discontinue MAVENCLAD if significant injury is suspected.
  • Hypersensitivity: In clinical studies, 11% of MAVENCLAD-treated patients had hypersensitivity reactions, compared to 7% of placebo patients. Serious hypersensitivity reactions occurred in 0.5% of MAVENCLAD-treated patients, compared to 0.1% of placebo patients. If a hypersensitivity reaction is suspected, discontinue treatment. Do not use MAVENCLAD in patients with a history of hypersensitivity to cladribine.

Adverse Reactions: The most common adverse reactions with an incidence of >20% for MAVENCLAD are upper respiratory tract infection, headache, and lymphopenia.

Drug Interactions/Concomitant Medication: Concomitant use of MAVENCLAD with immunosuppressive or myelosuppressive drugs and some immunomodulatory drugs (e.g., interferon beta) is not recommended and may increase the risk of adverse reactions.  Avoid concomitant use of certain antiviral and antiretroviral drugs. Avoid concomitant use of BCRP or ENT/CNT inhibitors as they may alter bioavailability of MAVENCLAD. 

Please see the full Prescribing Information, including boxed WARNING for additional information.

About Evobrutinib
Evobrutinib (M2951) is in clinical development to investigate its potential as a treatment for multiple sclerosis (MS), rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). It is an oral, highly specific inhibitor of Bruton's tyrosine kinase (BTK) which is important in the development and functioning of various immune cells including B lymphocytes and macrophages. Evobrutinib is designed to inhibit primary B cell responses such as proliferation and antibody and cytokine release, without directly affecting T cells. BTK inhibition is thought to suppress autoantibody-producing cells, which preclinical research suggests may be therapeutically useful in certain autoimmune diseases. Evobrutinib is currently under clinical investigation and not approved for any use anywhere in the world.

About Rebif® (interferon beta-1a) 
Rebif (interferon beta-1a) is used to treat relapsing forms of MS to decrease the frequency of relapses and delay the occurrence of some of the physical disability that is common in people with MS. The efficacy and safety of Rebif in controlled clinical trials beyond 2-years has not been established. 

IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION
Rebif is contraindicated in patients with a history of hypersensitivity to natural or recombinant interferon beta, human albumin, or any other component of the formulation. 

Rebif should be used with caution in patients with depression, a condition that is common in people with multiple sclerosis. Depression, suicidal ideation, and suicide attempts have been reported to occur with increased frequency in patients receiving interferon compounds, including Rebif. 

Severe liver injury, including some cases of hepatic failure requiring liver transplantation, has been reported rarely in patients taking Rebif. The potential for liver injury should be considered when used in combination with other products associated with liver injury. Monitor liver function tests and patients for signs and symptoms of hepatic injury. Consider discontinuing Rebif if hepatic injury occurs.

Anaphylaxis and other allergic reactions (some severe) have been reported as a rare complication of Rebif. Discontinue Rebif if anaphylaxis occurs. 

In controlled clinical trials, injection site reactions occurred more frequently in Rebif-treated patients than in placebo-treated and Avonex-treated patients. Injection site reactions including injection site pain, erythema, edema, cellulitis, abscess, and necrosis have been reported in the postmarketing setting. Do not administer Rebif into affected area until fully healed; if multiple lesions occur, discontinue Rebif until skin lesions are healed. 

Decreased peripheral blood counts in all cell lines, including pancytopenia, have been reported in Rebif-treated patients. In controlled clinical trials, leukopenia occurred at a higher frequency in Rebif-treated patients than in placebo and Avonex-treated patients. Thrombocytopenia and anemia occurred more frequently in 44 mcg Rebif-treated patients than in placebo-treated patients. Patients should be monitored for symptoms or signs of decreased blood counts. Monitoring of complete blood and differential white blood cell counts is also recommended. 

Cases of thrombotic microangiopathy (TMA), some fatal, have been reported with interferon beta products, including Rebif, up to several weeks or years after starting therapy. Discontinue Rebif if clinical symptoms and laboratory findings consistent with TMA occur, and manage as clinically indicated.

Caution should be exercised when administering Rebif to patients with pre-existing seizure disorders. Seizures have been temporally associated with the use of beta interferons, including Rebif, in clinical trials and in postmarketing reports. 

The most common side effects with Rebif are injection-site disorders, headaches, influenza-like symptoms, abdominal pain, depression, elevated liver enzymes, and hematologic abnormalities. 

There are no adequate and well-controlled studies in pregnant women. Rebif should be used during pregnancy only if the potential benefit justifies the potential risk to the fetus.

Rebif full prescribing information is available at http://www.emdserono.com/ms.country.us/en/images/Rebif_PI_tcm115_140051.pdf?Version=

About Multiple Sclerosis
Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a chronic, inflammatory condition of the central nervous system and is the most common non-traumatic, disabling neurological disease in young adults. It is estimated that more than 2.3 million people have MS worldwide. While symptoms can vary, the most common symptoms of MS include blurred vision, numbness or tingling in the limbs and problems with strength and coordination. The relapsing forms of MS are the most common.

EMD Serono, Inc. and Multiple Sclerosis
For more than 20 years, EMD Serono has been relentlessly focused on understanding the journey people living with MS face in order to create a meaningful, positive experience for them and the broader MS community. However, there is still much that is unknown about this complex and unpredictable disease. EMD Serono is digging deeper to advance the science.

About EMD Serono, Inc.
EMD Serono - the biopharmaceutical business of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, in the U.S. and Canada - is engaged in the discovery, research and development of medicines for patients with difficult to treat diseases. The business is committed to transforming lives by developing and delivering meaningful solutions that help address the therapeutic and support needs of individual patients. Building on a proven legacy and deep expertise in neurology, fertility and endocrinology, EMD Serono is developing potential new oncology and immuno-oncology medicines while continuing to explore potential therapeutic options for diseases such as psoriasis, lupus and MS. Today, the business has approximately 1,300 employees around the country with commercial, clinical and research operations based in the company's home state of Massachusetts. www.emdserono.com

Contact
alice.mcgrail@emdserono.com
Phone: +1 781 738 8791

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