Other names: M2951
Evobrutinib is a new drug treatment under investigation for relapsing remitting multiple sclerosis (MS). It is taken as a tablet once or twice daily.
Evobrutinib for relapsing remitting MS: Phase II
- Evobrutinib interferes with the function of macrophages which have been linked to MS progression and B cells, a type of white blood cell which is involved in the immune response that damages the myelin coating of nerves
- In relapsing remitting MS, evobrutinib reduced the number of new active lesions on MRI and reduced the yearly relapse rate.
- In phase II studies, the most common side effects were increased blood levels of liver enzymes.
Evobrutinib is also being developed as a treatment for rheumatoid arthritis and systemic lupus erythematosus.
How does evobrutinib work?
Evobrutinib inhibits an enzyme called Bruton’s tyrosine kinase (BTK), reducing the activation of B cells and inhibiting immune cells called macrophages which have been linked to MS progression. By inhibiting this enzyme, it is thought that evobrutinib will reduce the damage caused to nerve cells by MS.
How is evobrutinib taken?
Evobrutinib is taken as a tablet, once or twice daily.
What are the results so far?
Preliminary results from a phase II study were presented at a scientific meeting in October 2018. 267 people with relapsing MS took one of three doses of evobrutinib, placebo or Tecfidera for 24 weeks. The main measure was the number of active lesions seen on MRI. After 24 weeks of treatment, evobrutinib significantly reduced the number of active brain lesions and reduced the number of relapses compared to placebo. The study is continuing for a further 24 weeks, with those people who have been taking placebo switching to evobrutinib.
Further details of this study
In the phase II study, the most common side effect was an increase in blood levels of liver enzymes which returned to normal levels when treatment was stopped and did not cause any symptoms.
Drugs in development
New MS medications can take years in development until they reach us. Find out about new drugs on the horizon for MS.
Drug development process
Find out about the different stages involved in making a new medicine.
Last updated: January 2019
Last reviewed: January 2019
This page will be reviewed within three years