In a form of shorthand that immunologists use, helper T-cell immune function is referred to as "CD4 Th1 function," and suppressor inducer T-cell (immunoreg-ulatory) is referred to as a type of "CD4 Th2 function." The net result of both the interferons and glatimer acetate is to "shift immune function away from Th1 activity toward Th2 function." It would seem that the drugs used in combination might be more effective in altering immune function to increase CD4 Th2 func tion. Therefore, there may be additional benefit from the combination of these forms of treatment. A new pivotal study, the CombiRx study, designed to explore the potential benefit of interferon-beta-1a (Avonex) versus glatiramer acetate (Copaxone) versus the combination of these drugs, is now being initiated.
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