Background/Aims: This study compared the efficacy of once-daily administration of multimatrix mesalazine 2.4 g/day with multiple-dose mesalazine for the maintenance of remission. Methods: In this multicenter, randomized, double-blind study, 203 patients with ulcerative colitis in remission received multimatrix mesalazine 2.4 g/day once-daily or time-dependent (controlled- release) mesalazine 2.25 g/day 3 times-daily for 48 weeks. The primary efficacy endpoint was the proportion of patients without rectal bleeding. Results: The proportion of patients without rectal bleeding during the 48-week treatment period in the per protocol set was 84.8% (84/99) in the multimatrix mesalazine 2.4 g/day group and 78.0% (78/100) in the controlled-release mesalazine 2.25 g/day group. The difference between the 2 treatment groups was 6.8% (two-sided 95% confidence interval, -3.9% to 17.6%). The noninferiority margin of -10% was met in the comparison of multimatrix mesalazine 2.4 g/day once-daily with controlled-release mesalazine 2.25 g/day. Multimatrix mesalazine 2.4 g/day once-daily demonstrated consistent efficacy in all subgroups. There was no difference between the 2 treatment groups with regard to safety. Conclusions: A once-daily dose of 2 multimatrix mesalazine tablets (2.4 g) was not inferior to controlled-release mesalazine 2.25 g/day 3 times-daily in maintaining absence of rectal bleeding in ulcerative colitis.
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