Trusted Resources: Education

Scientific literature and patient education texts

Nusinersen: A Review in 5q Spinal Muscular Atrophy

key information

source: CNS drugs

year: 2021

authors: Hoy SM


Survival motor neuron 1 (SMN1), located on chromosome 5q, encodes the survival motor neuron (SMN) protein. A deletion or mutation in SMN1 results in a rare neuromuscular disorder: 5q spinal muscular atrophy (SMA). In such patients, SMN protein production relies solely on SMN2. Nusinersen (Spinraza) is a modified antisense oligonucleotide approved for the treatment of 5q SMA. Administered intrathecally, it modifies SMN2 pre-messenger RNA splicing, thereby increasing full-length SMN protein levels. Interim analyses from an ongoing phase II study suggest substantial clinical benefits with nusinersen initiation in presymptomatic patients. In phase III studies, nusinersen achieved significant and/or clinically relevant improvements in motor function in symptomatic patients with infantile- and later-onset 5q SMA, and significantly improved event-free survival and overall survival in patients with infantile-onset 5q SMA. Longer term (up to a median of ≈ 6 years of available data), motor function was maintained or improved in symptomatic patients. Nusinersen had a favourable safety profile in clinical studies in presymptomatic and symptomatic patients. Real-world experience supports the effectiveness, safety and tolerability of nusinersen in symptomatic patients of all ages. Thus, nusinersen remains an important treatment option among a broad range of 5q SMA patients.

organization: Springer Nature, Private Bag 65901, Mairangi Bay, Auckland, 0754, New Zealand.

DOI: 10.1007/s40263-021-00878-x

read more