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Pregnant Women with Relapsing MS Can Use Copaxone Without Harming Baby

May 12, 2017

Previous study show that babies of women with relapsing multiple sclerosis (RMS) who receive daily injections of Copaxone (glatiramer acetate) while pregnant carry the same risk of developing birth defects as babies as a whole. Copaxone is a synthetic protein that simulates the production of myelin, a substance that protects nerve fibers in the brain and spinal cord. The drug also suppresses the immune system by preventing T-cells from damaging myelin in a process called demyelination.

Recently, Tevla decided to investigate whether babies born to Copaxone-treated MS patients with data on babies born to healthy women. Glatiramer Acetate Pharmacovigilance Database contained 5,025 cases of Copaxone-treated women with information on the therapy’s safety. The two databases of healthy women were the Metropolitan Atlanta Congenital Defects Program and the European Surveillance of Congential Anomalies. Researchers’ analysis showed that the rates of congenital problems in the databases were comparable. This indicated that there was no greater risk of a baby from a Copaxone-treated MS patients having a congenital problem than babies at large.

“Physicians now have this data to consider as they consult with their RMS patients planning a family or already pregnant, to make individual treatment decisions,” Dr. Patricia K. Coyle, the study’s senior author, said in a news release.