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(Vienna, 19 April 2010) "The New England Journal of Medicine" has recently published an international comparative study which will lead to lasting changes to the therapeutic algorithm for patients suffering from Crohn's disease.

In an international comparative study in which the Department of Medicine III of MedUni Vienna took part headed by the study director Ao. Univ. Prof. Dr. Walter Reinisch it has now been possible for the first time to prove the superiority of a therapy with infliximab and a combination of infliximab and azathioprine over a conventional azathioprine monotherapy in patients with an average to severe case of Crohn's disease.

In the past, the comparative efficacy and safety of the therapy with infliximab and azathioprine were unknown in Crohn's disease. In a randomised double-blind trial on 508 patients it could be demonstrated that the early use of infliximab either as a mono- or a combination therapy with azathioprine is more likely to promise improvement without cortisone than a conventional therapeutic approach with azathioprine alone. The results of SONIC will lead to a sustainable change to the therapeutic algorithm for patients suffering from Crohn's disease and again position the working group on "chronic inflammatory intestinal diseases" of MedUni Vienna at the medical forefront.

»Publication in The New England Journal of Medicine:
“Infliximab, Azathioprine, or Combination Therapy for Crohn's Disease”
Jean Frédéric Colombel, M.D., William J. Sandborn, M.D., Walter Reinisch, M.D., Gerassimos J. Mantzaris, M.D., Ph.D., Asher Kornbluth, M.D., Daniel Rachmilewitz, M.D., Simon Lichtiger, M.D., Geert D'Haens, M.D., Ph.D., Robert H. Diamond, M.D., Delma L. Broussard, M.D., Kezhen L. Tang, Ph.D., C. Janneke van der Woude, M.D., Ph.D., Paul Rutgeerts, M.D., Ph.D., for the SONIC Study Group