Fingolimod ( Gilenya, FTY720 ) is an oral sphingosine-1-phosphate analogue that was approved by the FDA ( Food and Drug Administration ) in 2010 for the treatment of relapsing forms of multiple sclerosis ( MS ).
Fingolimod's mechanism of action is primarily related to lymphocyte sequestration in primary and secondary lymphoid tissues.
Phase III trials have demonstrated a reduction in annualized relapse rate and MRI ( Magnetic Resonance Imaging ) progression in Fingolimod-treated subjects compared with both placebo and Interferon-beta-treated subjects.
Frequent adverse effects include fatigue, gastrointestinal disturbance, headache and upper respiratory tract infection. More serious, but rare, adverse events associated with Fingolimod include atrioventricular block, symptomatic bradycardia, herpetic viral infections and macular edema.
According to Experts, Fingolimod is an effective treatment for relapsing multiple sclerosis and its oral route of administration may be preferred by some.
Fingolimod is generally well tolerated but requires diligence in patient selection and monitoring.
Additional information is needed regarding risk of infection, malignancy and rebound disease with long-term use of Fingolimod. ( Xagena )
Ward MD et al, Expert Opin Drug Saf 2014;13:989-998