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European Long-acting Antipsychotics in Schizophrenia Trial (EULAST)

The safety and scientific validity of this study is the responsibility of the study sponsor and investigators. Listing a study does not mean it has been evaluated by the U.S. Federal Government. Read our disclaimer for details. Identifier: NCT02146547
Recruitment Status : Completed
First Posted : May 26, 2014
Last Update Posted : September 1, 2020
Information provided by (Responsible Party):
Rene Kahn, UMC Utrecht

Brief Summary:
Schizophrenia is a chronic psychiatric illness with periods of remission and relapse. Patients vary in the frequency and severity of relapse, time until relapse and time in remission. Discontinuation of antipsychotic medication is by far the most important reason for relapse. A possible method to optimize medication adherence is to treat patients with long-term, depot medication rather than oral medication. However, despite its apparent "common sense" this approach has neither been universally accepted by practicing psychiatrists nor unequivocally demonstrated in clinical trials. Therefore, in this study we aim to investigate possible advantages of depot medication over oral antipsychotics in an independently designed and conducted, randomized, pragmatic trial.

Condition or disease Intervention/treatment Phase
Schizophrenia Drug: Aripiprazole Drug: Aripiprazole depot Drug: Paliperidone Drug: Paliperidone palmitate Phase 4

Detailed Description:

It remains unclear if depot medication can reduce relapse rates and improve clinical outcome when offered to all patients in need of continuation treatment with antipsychotics. Before we can conclude whether or not all schizophrenia patients could benefit from a switch to depot formulations, several questions remain to be answered. Is depot medication associated with better continuation rates and outcome? How are depot medications tolerated as compared to oral medication? In order to clarify these important issues we aim to perform a large multi-center trial in which schizophrenia patients in need of continuous treatment who are randomized 1:1:1:1 to two different depot preparations or to two different oral medications.

In this pragmatic, randomized, open label, multicenter, multinational comparative trial, schizophrenic patients aged 18 years or older, having experienced the first psychosis between 6 months and 7 years ago,with an indication (patient or physician initiated) to receive medication or to switch to another antipsychotic drug, will enter the study.

The study duration will be one month for the medication switch and then a follow-up of 18 months. Patients having refused to take part in the study will be asked to give consent and participate in a naturalistic follow-up, during which they will be followed with the Clinical Global Impression list (CGI) as closely related to the study schedule as possible, unless they also refuse this.

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Study Type : Interventional  (Clinical Trial)
Actual Enrollment : 536 participants
Allocation: Randomized
Intervention Model: Parallel Assignment
Masking: None (Open Label)
Primary Purpose: Treatment
Official Title: European Long-acting Antipsychotics in Schizophrenia Trial
Actual Study Start Date : February 2015
Actual Primary Completion Date : August 26, 2020
Actual Study Completion Date : August 26, 2020

Resource links provided by the National Library of Medicine

MedlinePlus related topics: Schizophrenia

Arm Intervention/treatment
Active Comparator: aripiprazole oral
the recommended starting dose for aripiprazole is 10 or 15 mg/day with a maintenance dose of 15 mg/day administered on a once-a-day schedule without regard to meals.Aripiprazole is effective in a dose range of 10 to 30 mg/day.
Drug: Aripiprazole
Administration in once-a-day schedule without regard to meals.
Other Name: Abilify

Active Comparator: Aripiprazole depot

The recommended starting and maintenance dose of aripiprazole depot is 400 mg. Titration of the dose of this medicinal product is not required. It should be administered once monthly as a single injection (no sooner than 26 days after the previous injection).

After the first injection, treatment with 10 mg to 20 mg oral aripiprazole should be continued for 14 consecutive days to maintain therapeutic aripiprazole concentrations during initiation of therapy.

If there are adverse reactions with the 400 mg dosage, reduction of the dose to 300 mg once monthly should be considered.

Drug: Aripiprazole depot
Abilify Maintena is an intramuscular (IM) depot formulation of oral aripiprazole. It provides the efficacy and safety profile of oral aripiprazole in a once-monthly injection.
Other Name: Abilify maintena

Active Comparator: Paliperidone
The recommended dose of paliperidone for the treatment of schizophrenia is 6 mg once daily, administered in the morning. Initial dose titration is not required. Some patients may benefit from lower or higher doses within the recommended range of 3 mg to 12 mg once daily. Dosage adjustment, if indicated, should occur only after clinical reassessment. When dose increases are indicated, increments of 3 mg/day are recommended and generally should occur at intervals of more than 5 days.
Drug: Paliperidone
Administration once a day orally standardised in relation to food intake.
Other Name: Invega

Active Comparator: Paliperidone palmitate
The first two administrations of paliperidone palmitate (150 mg at visit 3 and 100 mg one week later) need to be administered deep into the deltoid muscle in order to attain therapeutic concentrations rapidly. No oral supplementation with paliperidone is needed. Following the second dose, monthly maintenance doses can be administered in either the deltoid or gluteal muscle. The recommended monthly maintenance dose is 75 mg, although some patients may benefit from lower doses within the recommended range of 25 to 150 mg based on individual patient tolerability and/or efficacy.
Drug: Paliperidone palmitate
In selected patients with schizophrenia and previous responsiveness to oral paliperidone or risperidone, Xeplion may be used without prior stabilization with oral treatment if psychotic symptoms are mild to moderate and a long-acting injectable is needed.
Other Name: Xeplion

Primary Outcome Measures :
  1. All cause discontinuation rates [ Time Frame: 18 months ]

    Compare all cause discontinuation rates in patients with schizophrenia randomized to oral antipsychotic medications (i.e., aripiprazole or paliperidone) versus depot antipsychotic medications (i.e., paliperidone palmitate or aripiprazole depot).

    Discontinuation consist of (multiple options are possible):

    • the allocated treatment is stopped or used at doses outside the allowed range.
    • medication is switched or augmented with another antipsychotic after visit 4 for more than 1 month continuously or for more than 3 months cumulative over the 18 months of the trial.
    • a patient misses a monthly visit and does not show up after reminding him
    • patient withdraws consent for the study.
    • clinician decision to withdraw the patient.

Secondary Outcome Measures :
  1. Subjective Wellbeing under Neuroleptics [ Time Frame: 18 months ]
    Change from baseline in Subjective Wellbeing under Neuroleptics

  2. EuroQoL quality of life scale [ Time Frame: 18 months ]
    Change from baseline in EuroQoL quality of life scale

  3. Side effects assessment [ Time Frame: 18 months ]
    Change from baseline in SMARTS (Systematic Monitoring of Adverse events Related to TreatmentS) and the Abnormal and Involuntary Movement Scale.

  4. Assessment of cognitive functioning [ Time Frame: 18 months ]
    Compare the combined oral medication group with the combined depot treatment arms regarding cognitive functioning

  5. Assessment of Positive and Negative Symptom Scale [ Time Frame: 18 months ]
    Compare the combined oral medication group with the combined depot treatment arms regarding changes in different dimensions of psychopathology of schizophrenia

  6. Assessment of Personal and Social Performance Scale [ Time Frame: 18 months ]
    Compare the combined oral medication group with the combined depot

  7. Change from baseline of Personal and Social Performance Scale [ Time Frame: Baseline until 18 months ]
    Compare the combined oral medication group with the combined depot

Other Outcome Measures:
  1. Comparison between depot arms and the oral treatment arms on the one side [ Time Frame: 18 months ]
    The comparisons will also be made between the depot arms and the oral treatment arms on the one side and the patients who are followed up naturalistically.Depot arms are compared regarding augmentation with oral antipsychotics after visit 4.

  2. Treatment success regarding outcomes in patients who have not given consent for the main trial [ Time Frame: up to 18 months ]
    compare treatment success regarding the outcomes mentioned above to those achieved in a group of patients who did not agree to participate in the trial but could be followed up with the CGI.

  3. Compare side effects between combined oral medication groups & combined depot treatment [ Time Frame: 18 months ]
    Compare side effects and general wellbeing under antipsychotic medication between the combined oral medication groups with the combined depot treatment arms.

  4. Immune parameters [ Time Frame: 18 months ]
    Associations between immune parameters on the one hand, and primary as well as secondary outcome measures on the other.

Information from the National Library of Medicine

Choosing to participate in a study is an important personal decision. Talk with your doctor and family members or friends about deciding to join a study. To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the contacts provided below. For general information, Learn About Clinical Studies.

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Ages Eligible for Study:   18 Years and older   (Adult, Older Adult)
Sexes Eligible for Study:   All
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   No

Inclusion Criteria:

  1. Diagnosis of schizophrenia as defined by DSM-IV-R (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual) as determined by the
  2. Age 18 or older.
  3. 3. The first psychosis occurred at least 6 months and no more than 7 years ago.*
  4. If patients are using an antipsychotic drug, a medication switch is currently under consideration.
  5. Capable of providing written informed consent

    • Time of first psychosis is defined as the first contact with a health care professional in relation to psychotic symptoms.

Exclusion Criteria:

  1. Intolerance / hypersensitivity to both* of the drugs (including active substances, metabolites and excipients) in this study including oral paliperidone and aripiprazole and/or hypersensitivity to risperidone.
  2. Pregnancy or lactation.
  3. Patients who are currently using clozapine.
  4. Patients who do not fully comprehend the purpose or are not competent to make a rational decision whether or not to participate.
  5. Patients with a documented history of intolerance to both* of the study medications and/or a documented history of non-response to a treatment with both* study drugs of at least 6 weeks within the registered dose range.7. Patients who have been treated with an investigational drug within 30 days prior to screening.

8. Simultaneous participation in another intervention study (neither medication or psychosocial intervention).

* If intolerance/hypersensitivity or non-response in the past to one of the compounds is documented, the patient can still participate; however, randomization will take place by blocking that specific compound. That is, the patient will be randomized on either the oral or the depot arm of the other compound. This procedure of blocking one compound is also accepted for patients who have experienced too many side effects to one of the compounds in the past, as documented in the patient's medical record. The decision to block that specific compound for randomization in these cases is up to the discretion of the treating physician who will carefully balance this decision and clearly document it in the medical record.

Information from the National Library of Medicine

To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the contact information provided by the sponsor.

Please refer to this study by its identifier (NCT number): NCT02146547

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Sponsors and Collaborators
UMC Utrecht
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Principal Investigator: Rene S Kahn, professor UMC Utrecht
Principal Investigator: Wolfgang Fleischhacker, professor Department of Biological Psychiatry, Innsbruck University Clinics
Principal Investigator: Michael Davidson, professor Department of Psychiatry, Sackler Faculty of Medicine, Tel Aviv University, Israel
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Responsible Party: Rene Kahn, Professor, UMC Utrecht Identifier: NCT02146547    
Other Study ID Numbers: ABR49490
First Posted: May 26, 2014    Key Record Dates
Last Update Posted: September 1, 2020
Last Verified: August 2020
Individual Participant Data (IPD) Sharing Statement:
Plan to Share IPD: No
Keywords provided by Rene Kahn, UMC Utrecht:
depot, oral, antipsychotics, paliperidone, aripiprazole
Additional relevant MeSH terms:
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Schizophrenia Spectrum and Other Psychotic Disorders
Mental Disorders
Paliperidone Palmitate
Antidepressive Agents
Psychotropic Drugs
Antipsychotic Agents
Tranquilizing Agents
Central Nervous System Depressants
Physiological Effects of Drugs
Dopamine Agonists
Dopamine Agents
Neurotransmitter Agents
Molecular Mechanisms of Pharmacological Action
Serotonin 5-HT1 Receptor Agonists
Serotonin Receptor Agonists
Serotonin Agents
Serotonin 5-HT2 Receptor Antagonists
Serotonin Antagonists
Dopamine D2 Receptor Antagonists
Dopamine Antagonists