What is Plegridy? What is Plegridy used for?
Peginterferon beta-1a (Plegridy) 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). It differs from interferon beta-1a by having polyethylene glycol attached to the interferon molecules (peglated) that allow the interferon to remain in the body for longer times thus allowing less frequent dosing. 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. Plegridy works in the same way and has similar side effects as other interferon beta-1a products such as Avonex and Rebif. However, it is given every 14 days versus once weekly or 3 times per week injections. The FDA approved Plegridy in August, 2014.
What brand names are available for Plegridy?
Is Plegridy available as a generic drug?
Do I need a prescription for Plegridy?
What are the side effects of Plegridy?
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 Plegridy?
The recommended dose of Plegridy is 125 mcg injected under the skin (subcutaneously) every 14 days.
Treatment is started at the lower dose of 63 mcg followed by a second injection of 94 mcg injection on day 15. The full dose of 125 mcg is administered for the third dose on day 29 and every 14 days thereafter.
The best sites to inject are the areas of the body that usually have more fatty tissue such as the thigh, back of the upper arm, and stomach. To avoid injury, patients are advised to change or rotate the injection sites.
Which drugs or supplements interact with Plegridy?
Latest Neurology News
Daily Health News
Is Plegridy safe to take if I'm pregnant or breastfeeding?
Use of peginterferon beta-1a has not been adequately evaluated in pregnant women. Due to the lack of conclusive safety data, peginterferon beta-1a should be used in pregnancy only if the potential benefit justifies the potential risk to the fetus. Peginterferon beta-1a is classified as FDA pregnancy risk category C. This designation indicates fetal harm from the drug has been shown in animal studies, but information on effects in pregnant women is not clear.
It is not known if peginterferon beta-1a is excreted in breast milk. As many drugs enter breast milk and can potentially cause harm to the nursing infant, peginterferon beta-1a should be used cautiously in nursing mothers.
What else should I know about Plegridy?
What preparations of Plegridy are available?
Plegridy is available in prefilled pens or syringes for subcutaneous injection.
Injection: 125 mcg/0.5 ml solution in single-dose prefilled syringe or single-dose prefilled pen.
Injection starter pack: containing 63 mcg/0.5 ml and 94 mcg/0.5 ml solution in single-dose prefilled pens or syringes.
How should I keep Plegridy stored?
Preferably peginterferon beta-1a should be stored refrigerated at a temperature from 2 C to 8 C (36 F to 46 F). Peginterferon beta-1a should be warmed to room temperature before injecting. If refrigeration is not available, peginterferon beta-1a can be stored from 2 C to 25 C (36 F to 77 F) for up to 30 days.
Peginterferon beta-1a (Plegridy) is a protein produced by genetically engineered cells used in the treatment of multiple sclerosis by mimicking the human protein and reducing physical disability. Side effects, drug interactions, and use during pregnancy should be reviewed prior to taking any 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....
Hepatitis C Cure (Symptoms, Transmission, Treatments, and Cost)
Hepatitis is inflammation of the liver. There are a variety of toxins, diseases, illicit drugs, medications, bacterial and viral...
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
- Generic Copaxone Approved for Multiple Sclerosis
- Could Coffee Lower Risk of Multiple Sclerosis?
- Multiple Sclerosis Linked to Lower Levels of Key Nutrients in Women
- 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
- Research Shows No Link Between Vaccinations, 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
- Shrinkage of Brain Region May Signal Onset of Multiple Sclerosis
- Tecfidera Approved for Multiple Sclerosis
- FDA Approves New Multiple Sclerosis Drug
- Eye Scan Could Help Track Progress of Multiple Sclerosis
- Stem Cell Transplants May Show Promise for Multiple Sclerosis
- Screening Tool Reveals Two Multiple Sclerosis Types
- FDA Approves New Multiple Sclerosis Drug Aubagio
- Multiple Sclerosis Drugs May Not Delay Disability
- Scientists Pinpoint Antibody That May Be Specific to MS Patients
- Botox May Ease Tremors in Multiple Sclerosis Patients
- Pot Might Help Ease Multiple Sclerosis Symptoms
- FDA Issues Multiple Sclerosis Drug Alert
- Fish Oil Supplements Won't Help in Multiple Sclerosis: Study
- Experimental Pill for Multiple Sclerosis Shows Promise
- Experimental Pill May Ease Multiple Sclerosis Disability
- Multiple Sclerosis Changes With the Seasons
- New Clues to Preventing Memory Loss From MS
- Eye Exam May Someday Spot Multiple Sclerosis
- 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
- Fitness Boosts Brain Power in Multiple Sclerosis Patients
- First Oral Medications For MS Show Promise
- Mouse Study May Advance Multiple Sclerosis Research
- FDA Panel: New MS Drug Helps Walking
- Early Drug Treatment May Cut Multiple Sclerosis Risk
- Multiple Sclerosis Drug Combats Vision Loss
- Epstein-Barr Virus May Trigger Multiple Sclerosis
- Multiple Sclerosis in Men: Testosterone Might Help
Subscribe to MedicineNet's General Health Newsletter
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.