Conference Coverage

Dupilumab found effective for adolescents with moderate to severe AD



Adolescents with moderate to severe atopic dermatitis who used dupilumab experienced significant improvements in signs and symptoms of the condition, with minimal safety concerns, according to results of a phase 3 study.

Global medical affairs and director of pediatric dermatology for Sanofi Genzyme Doug Brunk/MDedge News

Dr. Randy Prescilla

“Dupilumab works as effectively in adolescents as in adults,” Randy Prescilla, MD, one of the study authors, said in an interview at the annual meeting of the Society for Pediatric Dermatology. “It gives us promise that we could go into other age groups with the same optimism. We are enrolling patients in even younger age groups.”

The double-blind, placebo-controlled study analyzed the efficacy and safety of dupilumab monotherapy in patients between the ages of 12 and 17 years with moderate to severe atopic dermatitis (AD) inadequately controlled with topical therapies. In the United States, dupilumab is approved for those aged 12 years and older with moderate to severe disease inadequately controlled by topical prescription treatments or when those therapies are not advisable.

For the 16-week study, Dr. Prescilla, global medical affairs director of pediatric dermatology for Sanofi Genzyme, and colleagues randomized 251 patients to one of three groups: dupilumab every 2 weeks (200 mg if baseline weight was less than 60 kg; 300 mg if that weight was 60 kg or more); 300 mg dupilumab every 4 weeks; or placebo every 2 weeks.

At week 16, a significantly higher proportion of patients in the two drug treatment groups had Investigator’s Global Assessment scores of 0/1, compared with those in the placebo group (24.4%, 17.9%, and 2.4%) as well as a significantly higher percentage of patients who achieved at least a 75% improvement in the Eczema Area and Severity Index (EASI-75) score (41.5%, 38.1%, and 8.2%).

In addition, patients in the two drug treatment groups experienced improved percent change in least square-means on the EASI from baseline to week 16, compared with those in the placebo group (–65.9%, –64.8%, and –23.6%), the Peak Pruritus Numerical Rating Scale (–47.9%, –45.5%, and –19.0%), body surface area affected by AD (–30.1%, –33.4%, and –11.7%), and in the SCORing AD clinical tool (P less than .001 for all comparisons).

Between baseline and week 16, scores on the Children’s Dermatology Life Quality Index and Patient-Oriented Eczema Measure improved significantly in the two dupilumab groups, compared with the placebo group. The rate of skin infection was higher in the placebo group (20%), compared with 11% in the group that received dupilumab every 2 weeks and 13.3% in the group receiving the drug every 4 weeks.

Conjunctivitis occurred more frequently with dupilumab treatment (9.8% in the every-2-weeks dupilumab group, 10.8% in the every-4-weeks dupilumab group, and 4.7% in the placebo group) as did injection site reactions (8.5%, 6.0%, and 3.5%). Two adverse events, one of which was serious, occurred in the placebo group.

Dr. Prescilla acknowledged certain limitations of the study, including its small sample size and the fact that it was limited to 16 weeks. “However, smaller sample size and duration are typical for this type of study and in line with the study design of the SOLO 1 and SOLO 2 studies in adults,” he said.

On Aug. 6, the European Commission extended the marketing authorization for dupilumab in the European Union to include adolescents 12-17 years of age with moderate to severe atopic dermatitis who are candidates for systemic therapy. On the same day, Sanofi Genzyme and Regeneron announced positive topline results in a phase 3 trial in children aged 6-11 years with severe AD.

The study’s principal investigator was Amy S. Paller, MD. The study was funded by Sanofi Genzyme and Regeneron. Dr. Prescilla is an employee of Sanofi Genzyme.

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