- What is interferon beta-1a rebif, and how does it work (mechanism of action)?
- What brand names are available for interferon beta-1a rebif?
- Is interferon beta-1a rebif available as a generic drug?
- Do I need a prescription for interferon beta-1a rebif?
- What are the side effects of interferon beta-1a rebif?
- What is the dosage for interferon beta-1a rebif?
- Which drugs or supplements interact with interferon beta-1a rebif?
- Is interferon beta-1a rebif safe to take if I'm pregnant or breastfeeding?
- What else should I know about interferon beta-1a rebif?
What is interferon beta-1a rebif, and how does it work (mechanism of action)?
Interferon beta-1a (Rebif) is a protein produced by recombinant DNA technology using genetically engineered Chinese Hamster Ovary Cells into which the human interferon beta genes have been introduced. It is used for treating multiple sclerosis (MS). Interferon beta-1a is designed to be identical to interferon beta that is naturally produced by various cells in the body. Interferon beta has antiviral properties and plays a role in regulating the immune response. The exact mechanism by which interferon beta-1a works in the body to treat MS is not known. Interferon beta-1a does not cure MS. Rather, it helps to decrease the number of flare-ups and slows the occurrence of some of the physical disability that commonly occurs in the disease. Rebif was first approved by the FDA in 1996.
What are the side effects of interferon beta-1a rebif?
The most common side effects of interferon beta-1a are:
- injection site reactions,
- flu-like symptoms,
- muscle aches,
- diarrhea, and
Flu-like symptoms are commonly experienced when patients first start taking interferon beta-1a. These symptoms can be managed with over-the-counter pain and fever reducers, and usually decrease or go away over time.
What is the dosage for interferon beta-1a rebif?
The recommended dose of Rebif is either 22 mcg or 44 mcg injected subcutaneously three times per week. It should be administered around the same time each week on the same three days of the week at least 48 hours apart.
The best sites to inject are the areas of the body that usually have more fatty tissue like the thigh, the outer surface of the upper arm, stomach, or buttocks. Avoid injecting around the waistlines or within 2 inches of the navel. To prevent injury, patients who are very thin should only inject the thigh or the outer surface of the arm.
Which drugs or supplements interact with interferon beta-1a rebif?
Is interferon beta-1a rebif safe to take if I'm pregnant or breastfeeding?
Use of interferon beta-1a has not been adequately evaluated in pregnant women. Due to the lack of conclusive safety data, interferon beta-1a should be used in pregnancy only if the potential benefit justifies the potential risk to the fetus. Interferon beta-1a is classified as FDA pregnancy risk category C (animal studies show an adverse effect on the fetus).
It is not known if interferon beta-1a is excreted in breast milk. As many drugs enter breast milk and can potentially cause harm to the nursing infant, interferon beta-1a should be used cautiously in nursing mothers.
What else should I know about interferon beta-1a rebif?
What preparations of interferon beta-1a rebif are available?
Injection: 8.8 mcg/0.2 ml, 22 mcg/0.5 ml, and 44 mcg/0.5 ml in single-dose prefilled syringe or single-dose autoinjector.
How should I keep interferon beta-1a rebif stored?
Preferably interferon beta-1a should be stored refrigerated between 2 C to 8 C (36 F to 46 F). If needed, interferon beta-1a can be stored between 2 C to 25 C (36 F to 77 F) for up to 30 days.
Quick GuideMultiple Sclerosis (MS) Symptoms and Treatment
Interferon beta-1a (Rebif) is a synthetic protein the is typically made naturally in the body and is used to treat relapsing multiple sclerosis in adults. Side effects, drug interactions, and pregnancy safety should be reviewed prior to taking this medication.
Multimedia: Slideshows, Images & Quizzes
Multiple Sclerosis (MS) Quiz: Test Your Medical IQ
Multiple Sclerosis is a debilitating neurological condition. Take the MS Quiz to test your knowledge of the causes, symptoms,...
Picture of Multiple Sclerosis Symptoms
Symptoms of multiple sclerosis may be single or multiple and may range from mild to severe in intensity and short to long in...
Multiple Sclerosis (MS) Symptoms and Treatment
Learn about multiple sclerosis (MS) causes, symptoms, and treatment for this autoimmune disease that attacks the nerves of the...
Related Disease Conditions
Multiple Sclerosis (MS) Symptoms, Causes, Treatment, Life Expectancy
Multiple sclerosis or MS is an autoimmune disorder in which brain and spinal cord nerve cells become demyelinated. This damage...
Alternative Treatment for MS (CAM for MS)
The term alternative therapy, in general, is used to describe any medical treatment or intervention that has not been...
Multiple Sclerosis Early Symptoms and Signs (Early, Body Areas Affected)
Multiple sclerosis (MS) symptoms vary from person to person, and can last for days to months without periods of remission....
Is MS Contagious? (Multiple Sclerosis)
Multiple sclerosis, or MS, is a degenerative disease of the covering around the nerves in the central nervous system (CNS)....
Treatment & Diagnosis
Medications & Supplements
Prevention & Wellness
- New Drug Could Help Kids With MS
- Could Coffee Lower Risk of Multiple Sclerosis?
- Early Study Says Stem Cells May Reverse Multiple Sclerosis Disability
- Ulcer Bacteria Tied to Lower Multiple Sclerosis Risk in Women
- Study: HPV Vaccine Doesn't Increase Risk for Multiple Sclerosis
- Can Diet Affect Multiple Sclerosis?
- Study: Undiagnosed Sleep Disorders Common With Multiple Sclerosis
- People With HIV May Be at Lower Risk for Multiple Sclerosis
- Vitamin D May Slow Multiple Sclerosis, Study Suggests
- TB Vaccine May Work Against Multiple Sclerosis: Study
- Controversial Theory Behind Possible MS Cause Refuted
- Tecfidera Approved for Multiple Sclerosis
- Botox May Ease Tremors in Multiple Sclerosis Patients
- FDA Issues Multiple Sclerosis Drug Alert
- New Clues to Preventing Memory Loss From MS
- Sunlight May Play Role in Multiple Sclerosis Risk
- Twins Study Points to Environmental Cause for MS
- 2 Types of MS, Study Reveals
- Discovery May Lead to Better Multiple Sclerosis Treatments
- Mouse Study May Advance Multiple Sclerosis Research
- FDA Panel: New MS Drug Helps Walking
- Early Drug Treatment May Cut Multiple Sclerosis Risk
- Epstein-Barr Virus May Trigger Multiple Sclerosis
- Multiple Sclerosis in Men: Testosterone Might Help
Health Solutions From Our Sponsors
Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration
You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.