Natalizumab in pediatric multiple sclerosis: Results of a cohort of 55 cases

A. Ghezzi, C. Pozzilli, L. M E Grimaldi, L. Moiola, V. Brescia-Morra, A. Lugaresi, G. Lus, F. Rinaldi, M. A. Rocca, M. Trojano, A. Bianchi, G. Comi, M. Filippi

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Background: Limited information is available on the use of natalizumab (NA) in pediatric multiple sclerosis (ped-MS) patients. Objective: The purpose of this study was to describe the long-term effects of NA in a large cohort of active ped-MS patients. Methods: Patients with definite ped-MS were treated with NA if in the previous year they had experienced at least two relapses or a severe relapse with incomplete recovery while on immunomodulating treatment, or at least two relapses and new magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) lesions regardless of any prior treatment. Results: The study included 55 patients (mean age: 14.4 years, mean number of relapses: 4.4, pre-treatment mean disease duration: 25.5 months). They received a median number of 26 infusions. Three relapses occurred during the follow-up, one female patient continued to deteriorate in cognitive functioning. Mean Expanded Disability Status Scale (EDSS) scores decreased from 2.7 to 1.9 at the last visit (p <0.001). During the follow-up the majority of patients remained free from MRI activity. Transient and mild clinical adverse events occurred in 20 patients. Mild hematological abnormalities occurred in seven patients. Anti-JCV antibodies were detected in 20/51 tested patients. Conclusions: NA was well tolerated in all patients. A strong suppression of disease activity was observed in the majority of patients during the follow-up.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1106-1112
Number of pages7
JournalMultiple Sclerosis Journal
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 2013


  • adolescence
  • childhood
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • natalizumab

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Neurology


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