Scientific article

Biological agents in monotherapy for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis

Published inSchweizerische medizinische Wochenschrift, vol. 144, w13950
Publication date2014

Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a chronic, systemic, inflammatory disease, which results in joint destruction and permanent disability. The advent of disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs (DMARDs) has made a profound impact on the outcome and prognosis of RA. Methotrexate (MTX) is a central agent in RA therapy, and is used either alone or in combination with biological DMARDs. However, a large proportion of RA patients (20%-40%) either do not respond to or are unable to tolerate MTX or the alternative agents used in place of MTX (including leflunomide, sulfasalazine, azathioprine, hydroxycholoquine and combination DMARDs). For these patients, monotherapy with biological DMARDs is a key treatment option that balances tolerability with improved clinical outcomes. This article reviews the data for four biological agents approved for use as monotherapy in Switzerland (adalimumab, certolizumab pegol, etanercept and tocilizumab) in order to formulate a consensus statement on their roles in biologic monotherapy of RA.

  • Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized/adverse effects/therapeutic use
  • Antirheumatic Agents/adverse effects/therapeutic use
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid/drug therapy
  • Humans
  • Immunoglobulin Fab Fragments/adverse effects/therapeutic use
  • Immunoglobulin G/adverse effects/therapeutic use
  • Polyethylene Glycols/adverse effects/therapeutic use
  • Receptors, Tumor Necrosis Factor/therapeutic use
Citation (ISO format)
GABAY, Cem et al. Biological agents in monotherapy for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis. In: Schweizerische medizinische Wochenschrift, 2014, vol. 144, p. w13950. doi: 10.4414/smw.2014.13950
Main files (1)
Article (Published version)
ISSN of the journal0036-7672

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