Ulcerative Colitis Patients Resistant to Treatment May Find Golimumab a Viable Therapeutic Option

Ulcerative Colitis Patients Resistant to Treatment May Find Golimumab a Viable Therapeutic Option
Golimumab (symponi) is the latest addition to TNF-α blocking drugs for inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD) such as ulcerative colitis (UC). A summary of all available safety and efficacy data on the drug was recently published in the journal Drug, Healthcare and Patient Safety, concluding the face that golimumab presents a valid treatment option for UC patients refractory (resistant) to treatment. The review, "Benefit-risk assessment of golimumab in the treatment of refractory ulcerative colitis," was performed by Daniela Pugliese and colleagues from Catholic University in Rome, Italy. Two earlier TNF-α blockers used for UC have been on the market for about 15 years, and while they have revolutionized treatment for many patients, an estimated 25 percent of patients are refractory to any available treatment, being left with colectomy as their only choice. The new addition to the TNF-α blocking drug class differs from its predecessors by being an entirely humanized antibody that is more stable and binds strongly to TNF-α. The treatment regimen consists of an induction phase of higher doses for the first weeks, and a maintenance phase of 50 or 100 mg every four weeks. A number of clinical trials have investigated the efficiency and safety of both induction and maintenance phases of the treatment. The trials studying the induction phase found that only the quality of life was improved after a six-week treatment, while no improvements were observed in clinical outcomes. A study of the maintenance phase of golimumab therapy included only the patients who had responded to treatment in the induction study and who were re-randomized to either golimumab treatment or placebo. The main outcome measure of the study was a continuous clinical response, de
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