1. In this randomized controlled trial, subcutaneous tanezumab resulted in moderate improvements in joint pain and physical function for patients with osteoarthritis compared to placebo.
2. Tanezumab-treated patients had more adverse events and more joint replacements.
Evidence Rating Level: 1 (Excellent)
Study Rundown: Nerve growth factor (NGF) is involved in pain signaling during osteoarthritis (OA), and tanezumab is an IgG2Δa monoclonal antibody that inhibits NGF binding to its receptors. While tanezumab may reduce pain in OA, smaller studies have reported an increase in adverse effects, such as paresthesias. In this randomized controlled trial of OA patients that had failed or could not take standard pharmacological treatments, tanezumab slightly reduced pain and improved function over 16 weeks compared to placebo. However, there was a higher rate of adverse effects and more joint replacements in the tanezumab-treated groups.
Though the findings suggest certain patients may benefit from tanezumab as a second line agent, this study has several limitations. First, the study length was too short to assess the long-term efficacy of tanezumab for chronic OA pain. Second, the estimates of adverse event rates, especially for joint safety events, would be more precise with a much larger treatment population.
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