Natalizumab (Tysabri®)

Brand NameTysabri®
Scientific NameNatalizumab
What is it?An injectable medication that is a manufactured antibody designed to prevent certain types of white blood cells from moving out of the bloodstream and into organs, namely the brain.
What does it do?TYSABRI® (natalizumab) is a prescription medicine used to treat adults with relapsing forms of multiple sclerosis (MS) to slow the worsening of symptoms common in people with MS and to decrease the number of flare-ups (relapses). In patients with relapsing forms of multiple sclerosis, natalizumab has been shown to delay the accumulation of physical disability and reduce the frequency of clinical exacerbations.
How does it work?Natalizumab binds to a specific site, or receptor on T-cells and prevents them from binding to other specific receptors on the inside of blood vessels. By attaching itself to certain immune cells , natalizumab prevents these cells from leaving the blood stream and entering the brain and spinal cord where they can cause inflammation and damage
How is it taken?-Intravenously
-Infused over 60 minutes followed by a 30-60 minute observation period Dose
– 300 mg every four weeks
What are the side effects ?TYSABRI increases the risk of progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy (PML).
Other side effects include :
-Itching, hives, swelling in your face or hands, chest tightness, low blood pressure
– Headache, nausea, diarrhea, stomach pain
– Fatigue, trouble sleeping, depression
– Dizziness or tremor
– Difficulty urinating
– Increased risk of other infections and infection outbreaks
– Urinary tract infections, vaginitis, lung infections, herpes zoster (shingles), herpes outbreaks
– Arm and leg pain, joint pain
– Liver damage: pain in the upper, right area of your torso, yellow skin and eyes
– Irregular, reduced or loss of menstruation
– Appendicitis; rare
– Melanoma; rare
What is PML?PML is a rare neurological disease that is caused by the JC virus that can cause death or severe disability. There is no known cure for PML. This disease can affect people with a weakened immune system. Since the risk of developing PML exists, Tysabri® is generally recommended for patients who have not responded adequately to, or who have not tolerated other treatments for MS. Patients receiving Tysabri® must be enrolled in the TOUCH™ Prescribing Program. The risk of PML still remains at approximately 1/1000.

The TOUCH™ Prescribing Program
Tysabri® is only given by physicians and infusion centers that are enrolled in the TOUCH™ Prescribing Program with Biogen.