Cytokine Signalling Forum

Publications





May 21

Trial of Upadacitinib and Adalimumab for Psoriatic Arthritis

McInnes IB, Anderson JK, Magrey M, Merola JF, Liu Y, Kishimoto M, Jeka S, Pacheco- Tena C, Wang X, Chen L, Zueger P, Liu J, Pangan AL, Behrens F.
N Engl J Med. 2021;384(13):1227-1239.

Upadacitinib efficacy proves to be greater than placebo, and non-inferior to adalimumab, in treating patients with psoriatic arthritis (PsA). Already approved for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis, McInnes, et al. studied oral upadacitinib at a dose of 15 mg or 30 mg, alongside placebo or adalimumab, in this 24-week, Phase III trial, in over 1700 patients with PsA. At the primary endpoint (Week 12), ACR20 response was greater with upadacitinib than placebo, and non-inferior to adalimumab; ...

Keywords: JAK, Upadacitinib, Clinical, Phase 3

April 21

Risk of venous thromboembolism associated with tofacitinib in patients with rheumatoid arthritis: a population-based cohort study

Desai RJ, Pawar A, Khosrow-Khavar F, Weinblatt ME, Kim SC.
Rheumatology (Oxford). 2021 Mar 22:keab294. Epub ahead of print. DOI: 10.1093/rheumatology/keab294

A population-based cohort study of 87,653 RA patients has found no evidence for an increased risk of venous thromboembolism (VTE) for tofacitinib, versus TNFis, in patients with RA. The introduction of JAKinibs, almost a decade ago, has provided an important oral option for the treatment of RA. However, in recent years, a safety concern, relating to incidence of VTE after treatment, has emerged. Consequently, both the US and European regulatory authorities now recommend caution for use of tofaci...

March 21

Safety and Efficacy of Filgotinib: Up to 4-Year Results From an Open-Label Extension Study of Phase 2 Rheumatoid Arthritis Programs

Kavanaugh A, Westhovens RR, Winthrop KL, Lee SJ, Tan Y, An D, Ye L, Sundy JS, Besuyen R, Meuleners L, Stanislavchuk M, Spindler AJ, Greenwald M, Alten R, Genovese MC.
J Rheumatol. 2021 Feb 1:jrheum.201183. DOI: 10.3899/jrheum.201183.

A long-term extension study of filgotinib showed consistent safety profile and sustained efficacy with the drug for up to four years. The DARWIN 3 study, for patients who previously completed either the 24-week DARWIN 1 study (filgotinib + MTX) or the DARWIN 2 study (filgotinib monotherapy), enrolled 739 patients with RA. At the time of analysis, 440 patients had received four years or more of filgotinib. Exposure-adjusted incidence rate per 100 patient-years-of-exposure for TEAEs was 24.6 i...

Keywords: JAK, Filgotinib, Clinical, Phase 2

February 21

Diminished cytokine-induced Jak/STAT signaling is associated with rheumatoid arthritis and disease activity

Ptacek J, Hawtin RE, Sun D, Louie B, Evensen E, Mittleman BB, Cesano A, Cavet G, Bingham CO III, Cofield SS, Curtis JR, Danila MI, Raman C, Furie RA, Genovese MC, et al.
PLoS ONE 2021;16(1):e0244187

This analysis provides evidence that immune cell signalling pathways are important in RA. There were consistent differences between RA patients and healthy controls in IFNα, IL-6, IL-10 and GM-CSF+ IL-2 induced JAK/STAT signalling in multiple immune cell subsets. We know that RA is characterised by dysregulation of immune responses, but the exact cause is unknown. Recently, single-cell transcriptomics and mass cytometry confirmed the critical role of activated immune cells and fibroblasts...

Keywords: JAK, MOA

January 21

Points to Consider for the Treatment of Immune-Mediated Inflammatory Diseases With Janus Kinase Inhibitors: A Consensus Statement

Nash P, Kerschbaumer A, Dorner T, Dougados M, Fleischmann RM, Geissler K, McInnes I, Pope JE, van der Heijde D, Stoffer-Marx M, Takeuchi T, Trauner M, Winthrop KL, de Wit M, Aletaha D, Baraliakos X, Boehncke W-H, Emery P, Isaacs JD, Kremer J, Lee EB, et al.
2021 Jan;80(1):71-87. doi: 10.1136/annrheumdis-2020-218398. Epub 2020 Nov 6.

JAKi are approved in various immune-mediated inflammatory diseases. With five JAKi now licensed, this paper reviews key points to consider in their use to assist clinicians, patients, and other stakeholders once the decision is made to commence JAKi. The consensus was developed by a Steering Committee and an expanded Task Force using EULAR standard operating procedures. The committee included patients as well as experts in rheumatology, gastroenterology, haematology, dermatology, and infectious ...

Keywords: JAK, Efficacy

October 20

Tofacitinib and Baricitinib Are Taken up by Different Uptake Mechanisms Determining the Efficacy of Both Drugs in RA

Amrhein J, Drynda S, Schlatt L, Karst U, Lohmann C, Ciarimboli G, Bertrand J.
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2020; 21:6632 DOI: 10.3390/ijms21186632

Amrhein et al examined the different uptake and expulsion mechanisms of BARI and TOF in cellular assays. Different cellular uptake mechanism for BARI and TOF was observed and showed that BARI’s transport was not dependent on organic cation transporters. Results indicated TOF was exported from RASF in a MATE-1 dependent way. TOF might be exported from healthy cells, thereby not inhibiting JAK pathway in these cells The interaction of BARI and TOF with OCTs was investigated using quenching ...

Keywords: JAK, Tofacitinib, Preclinical, MOA

September 20

Infections in Baricitinib Clinical Trials for Patients with Active Rheumatoid Arthritis

Winthrop KL, Harigai M, Genovese MC, Lindsey S, Takeuchi T, Fleischmann R, Bradley JD, Byers NL, Hyslop DL, Issa M, Nishikawa A, Rooney TP, Witt S, Dickson CL, Smolen JS, Dougados M.
Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases, May 2020

Baricitinib, an oral selective JAK1 and JAK2 inhibitor,8 demonstrated significant clinical efficacy in phase 3 RA trials. Pooled data from these trials, including a long-term extension (LTE), inform the safety profile for baricitinib, mainly to evaluate the incidence of infection in patients with active rheumatoid arthritis (RA), with a focus on serious infection, tuberculosis (TB), herpes zoster (HZ) and opportunistic infection (OI). The data collected were from eight double-blind randomised ...

Keywords: JAK, Baricitinib, Clinical, Safety

August 20

Efficacy and Safety of Upadacitinib Monotherapy in Methotrexate-naïve Patients with Moderately to Severely Active Rheumatoid Arthritis (SELECT-EARLY): A Randomized, Double-blind, Active-comparator, Multi-center, Multi-country Trial

van Vollenhoven R, Takeuchi T, Pangan AL, Friedman A, Mohamed MEF, Chen S, Rischmueller M, Blanco R, Xavier RM, Strand V.
Arthritis Rheumatol 2020

Upadacitinib monotherapy demonstrated superior clinical, radiographic, and patient-reported outcomes versus methotrexate in methotrexate-naïve RA patients. This 48-week double-blind active comparator study investigated upadacitinib monotherapy in patients with early RA, who were either methotrexate-naïve, or who had very limited exposure. 947 patients were randomised to once-daily upadacitinib 15 or 30 mg, or weekly methotrexate. Unusually, there were two separate primary endpoints, s...

Keywords: JAK, Upadacitinib, Efficacy

June 20

Baricitinib In Patients with Rheumatoid Arthritis With Inadequate Response to Methotrexate: Results From A Phase 3 Study

Li Z, Hu J, Bao C, Li X, Li X, Xu J, Spindler AJ, Zhang X, Xu J, He D, Li Z, Wang G, Yang Y, Wu H, Ji F, Tao H, Zhan L, Bai F, Rooney TP, Zerbini CAF.
Clin Exp Rheumatol . Jul-Aug 2020;38(4):732-741. Epub 2020 May 20.

This study conducted mainly in Chinese patients with RA, and an inadequate response to MTX, showed that baricitinib 4mg was associated with significant improvements and consistent with the findings from previous clinical trials. The efficacy and safety of baricitinib have been assessed in several clinical trials, predominantly in Caucasian populations. However, evidence on the efficacy and safety of baricitinib in Chinese patients is limited, with only one of the main clinical trial program stu...

Keywords: JAK, Baricitinib, Clinical, Efficacy

May 20

Evaluation of Hepatitis B Virus in Clinical Trials of Baricitinib in Rheumatoid Arthritis

Harigai M, Winthrop K, Takeuchi T, Hsieh T-Y, Chen Y-M, Smolen JS, Burmester G, Walls C, Wu W-S, Dickson C, Liao R, Genovese MC.
RMD Open 2020;6:e001095

Although hepatitis B virus (HBV) reactivation was seen in patients with RA treated with DMARDs, including BARI, who had serology suggestive of prior infection, reactivation was transient even with continued BARI treatment and did not account for any clinically relevant AEs. Reactivation of HBV replication is a recognised complication in patients receiving biologic agents for RA, such as DMARDs. Limited data exist on prevalence of occult infection and the incidence of reactivation in RA patients...

Keywords: JAK, Baricitinib, Clinical, Safety

April 20

Relative Efficacy and Safety of Tofacitinib, Baricitinib, Upadacitinib, and Filgotinib in Comparison to Adalimumab in Patients with Active Rheumatoid Arthritis

Lee YH, Song GG.
Z Rheumatol. 2020 DOI: 10.1007/s00393-020-00750-1

This Bayesian network meta-analysis, comparing the relative efficacy and safety of JAK inhibitors, determined BARI 4mg + MTX and UPA 15mg + MTX were the most effective. The analysis included 5451 patients with an inadequate response to MTX and active RA, from four RCTs. Relative effects were converted into a probability allowing each treatment to be ranked. BARI and UPA had significantly higher ACR20 response rates than ADA 40mg + MTX whilst TOF 5mg and FIL 200mg had comparable ACR20 response ...

Keywords: JAK, Baricitinib

IgA Vasculitis Developed as an Adverse Effect of Tofacitinib Taken for Rheumatoid Arthritis

Itoh I, Kasuno K, Yamamoto C, Takahashi N, Shimizu H, Ojima T, Hayashi S, Kimura H, Iwano M.
Intern Med. 2020;59(6):817-821

Nephrotoxicity is a key side effect of NSAIDs and DMARDs used to treat RA, while biologics can reportedly cause proliferative glomerulonephritis or crescentic glomerulonephritis. This report reviews a patient on TOF presenting IgA vasculitis as an adverse effect that fully resolved following termination of TOF. Drug induced IgA vasculitis has been previously described for anti-TNFɑ therapies, but this is the first report with JAK inhibitor therapy. This is a case report of a 67-year old woman w...

Keywords: JAK, Tofacitinib, Real World, Safety

March 20

Baricitinib Exposure During Pregnancy in Rheumatoid Arthritis

Costanzo G, Firinu D, Losa F, Deidda M, Barca MP, Del Giacco S.
Ther Adv Musculoskelet Dis. 2020;12:1759720X19899296

Broad and focused studies are required to have an insight of safety for small molecules, such as JAK inhibitors in the case of accidental exposure before or during pregnancy. This case study’s objective describes a case report of a 43-year-old woman affected by RA who became pregnant during BARI treatment. She has had two previous pregnancies at term without complications. After failure of bDMARDs due to loss of efficacy and adverse drug reactions, the patient was started on BARI when i...

Keywords: JAK, Baricitinib, Real World, Safety

November 19

Exposure-Response Analyses of Upadacitinib Efficacy and Safety in Phase 2 and 3 Studies to Support Benefit-Risk Assessment in Rheumatoid Arthritis

Nader A, Mohamed M-EF, Winzenborg I, Doelger E, Noertersheuser P, Pangan AL, Othman AA.
Clin Pharmacol Ther . 2020 Apr;107(4):994-1003. doi: 10.1002/cpt.1671.

UPA 15 mg provided the optimal benefit-risk in RA through maximizing efficacy with only small incremental benefit with 30 mg, and with consistency across RA subpopulations and with UPA monotherapy or combination with csDMARDs. Exposure-response analyses were conducted using combined data from two Phase 2b and five Phase 3 studies in order to characterise the relationship between plasma exposure and efficacy, as well as to select safety parameters using the totality of the data in subjects with...

Keywords: JAK, Upadacitinib, Clinical, Efficacy

A systematic review and meta-analysis of infection risk with small molecule JAK inhibitors in rheumatoid arthritis

Bechman K, Subesinghe S, Norton S, Atzeni F, Galli M, Cope AP, Winthrop KL, Galloway JB.
Rheumatology (Oxford) 2019;58(10):1755–66

Absolute serious infection rates were low. However, across the JAKinibs, the incidence of HZ is higher than expected for the population. While the risk was numerically greatest with BARI, indirect comparisons between the drugs did not demonstrate any significant difference in risk. How JAKinibs increase the risk of HZ reactivation is unclear, but how different JAKs interact in the immune response suggest that there may be differences in safety profiles between JAKinib drugs, underpinned by the...

Keywords: JAK, Baricitinib, Clinical, Safety

Tofacitinib Modulates the VZV-specific CD4+ T Cell Immune Response in vitro in Lymphocytes of Patients with Rheumatoid Arthritis

Almanzar A, Kienle F, Schmalzing M, Maas A, Tony H-P, Prelog M.
Rheumatology (Oxford) 2019;58(11):2051–60

TOF significantly modulated the Th1 response to Varicella-zoster-virus (VZV). The poor VZV-specific cellular immune responses in patients with RA may be considered in recommendations regarding appropriate vaccination strategies for enhancing the VZV-specific Th1 response. Previous studies have shown that treatment with JAKinibs increases HZ incidence compared with conventional DMARDs. This cross-sectional in vitro study aimed to investigate the effect of TOF on the VZV-specific T cell immune re...

Keywords: JAK, Tofacitinib, Clinical, Safety

September 19

Outcomes of Dose Reduction, Withdrawal, and Restart of Tofacitinib in Patients with Rheumatoid Arthritis: A Prospective Observational Study

Mori S, Ueki Y.
Clin Rheumatol. 2019 Aug 9. DOI: 10.1007/s10067-019-04721-z

Following achievement of remission or low disease activity (LDA), a dose reduction strategy of TOF to a 5mg QD dose was preferable to immediate withdrawal of TOF, with lower relapse rates. Clinical remission or LDA early in the disease course is a target for every RA patient. Although maintaining a state of remission or LDA is beneficial to patients, the AEs and costs associated with DMARDs, have significant burdens on patients during life-long RA treatment. This long-term study was performed t...

Keywords: JAK, Tofacitinib, Clinical, Efficacy

Comparison of Baricitinib, Upadacitinib, and Tofacitinib Mediated Regulation of Cytokine Signalling in Human Leukocyte Subpopulations

McInnes IB, Byers NL, Higgs RE, Lee J, Macias WL, Na S, Ortmann RA, Rocha G, Rooney TP, Wehrman T, Zhang X, Zuckerman SH, Taylor PC.
Arthritis Res Ther. 2019 Aug 2;21(1):183

Different JAKinibs modulated distinct cytokine pathways to varying degrees, and no agent potently or continuously inhibited an individual cytokine signalling pathway throughout the dosing interval. This study aimed to compare the in vitro cellular pharmacology of BARI, TOF and UPA across relevant leukocyte subpopulations, coupled with their in vivo PK, to determine their effects on distinct cytokine pathways. Peripheral blood mononuclear cells from healthy donors were incubated with differen...

Keywords: JAK, Upadacitinib, Preclinical, Selectivity

August 19

Safety and Effectiveness of Upadacitinib or Adalimumab Plus Methotrexate in Patients with Rheumatoid Arthritis Over 48 Weeks with Switch to Alternate Therapy in Patients with Insufficient Response

Fleischmann RM, Genovese MC,  Enejosa JV,  Mysler E, Bessette L, Peterfy C,  Ostor P,  Li Y,  Song I.
Ann Rheum Dis 2019 DOI: 10.1136/annrheumdis-2019-215764

Consistent with Wk26 data, significantly more UPA patients achieved LDA and remission versus ADA and PBO over 48 weeks. RA patients often change therapy due to inadequate response and intolerance. The SELECT COMPARE study was designed to explore switching to JAK inhibitors from TNF inhibitors without a wash-out period (and vice versa). The long-term safety and efficacy of UPA was compared to ADA and PBO in MTX-IR. 1629 patients were blindly assigned 2:2:1 to; UPA 15mg QD, ADA 40mg Q2W and PBO, ...

Keywords: JAK, Upadacitinib, Clinical, Efficacy

June 19

Efficacy and Pharmacodynamic Modeling of the BTK Inhibitor Evobrutinib in Autoimmune Disease Models

Haselmayer P, Camps M, Liu-Bujalski L, Nguyen N, Morandi F, Head J, O’Mahony A, Zimmerli SC, Bruns L, Bender AT, Schroeder P, Grenningloh.
J Immunol 2019;202:2888–2906. DOI: 10.4049/jimmunol.1800583

BTK is involved in both adaptive and innate immune responses and mediates signalling of several immune receptors of relevance to RA and SLE pathogenesis. Targeting BTK is a promising approach therefore for autoimmune disorders with aberrant B cell responses. Evobrutinib is a novel, highly specific, and irreversible BTK inhibitor. In vivo and animal models showed that evobrutinib modulated B cell and innate immune cell activation, was efficacious, and prevented joint damage. The potency of evob...

Keywords: BTK, Preclinical, PK-PD

May 19

A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Infection Risk with Small Molecule JAK Inhibitors in Rheumatoid Arthritis

Bechman K, Subesinghe S, Norton S, Atzeni F, Galli M, Cope AP, Winthrop KL, Galloway JB.
Rheumatology (Oxford). DOI: 10.1093/rheumatology/kez087

How JAKinibs increase the risk of HZ reactivation is unclear. Roles of different JAKs in the immune response may suggest differences in safety profiles between drugs, underpinned by their differential JAK selectivity profiles. The authors undertook a systematic review and meta-analysis to evaluate SI and opportunistic indicator infections including HZ in RA Phase II/III clinic trials with JAKinibs. A literature review of RCT of TOF (5 mg BID), BARI (4 mg OD) and UPA (15 mg OD) was conducted. A...

Keywords: JAK, Tofacitinib, Clinical, Safety

Safety and Efficacy of Tofacitinib For Up to 9.5 Years in The Treatment of Rheumatoid Arthritis: Final Results of a Global, Open-Label, Long-Term Extension Study

Wollenhaupt J, Lee EB, Curtis JR, Silverfield J, Terry K, Soma K, Mojcik C, DeMasi R, Strengholt S, Kwok K, Lazariciu I, Wang L, Cohen S.
Arthritis Res Ther. 2019 Apr 5;21(1):89.

TOF 5 mg and 10mg BID demonstrated a consistent safety profile and sustained efficacy for up to 9.5 years in this open-label LTE ORAL Sequel study. TOF 5 mg and 10 mg BID demonstrated consistent safety (as monotherapy and combination therapy) and efficacy within this open-label LTE study of RA patients. As RA requires long-term treatment, it’s important to assess the long-term efficacy and safety of RA therapies to understand the potential lifelong impact on patient health and quality of ...

Keywords: JAK, Tofacitinib, Clinical, Efficacy

December 18

Evaluation of the Short-, Mid-, and Long-term Effects of Tofacitinib on Lymphocytes in Patients with Rheumatoid Arthritis

van Vollenhoven R, Lee EB, Strengholt S, Mojcik C, Valdez H, Krishnaswami S, Biswas P, Lazariciu I, Hazra A, Clark JD, Hodge J, Wang L, Choy E.
Arthritis Rheumatol 2018 DOI: 10. 1002/art.40780

Tofacitinib (TOF) treatment is associated with short-term transient increases in absolute lymphocyte counts (ALC), followed by a gradual decline to reach steady state by ~48 months. Changes in both ALC and lymphocyte subset counts (LSC) were reversible upon TOF discontinuation. Low ALC but not LSC were associated with an increased risk of serious infective episodes (SIEs) and herpes zoster (HZ). This data supported the treatment recommendations on ALC counts for starting and continuing therapy w...

Keywords: JAK, Tofacitinib, Clinical, Safety

Influence of Age and Renal Impairment on the Steady State Pharmacokinetics of Filgotinib, a Selective JAK1 Inhibitor

Namour F, Fagard L, Van der AA, Harrison P, Xin Y, Tasset C.
Br J Clin Pharmacol 2018 Dec;84(12):2779-2789. DOI:10.1111/bcp.13726

Age and renal impairment (RI) had limited impact on the pharmacokinetics (PK) of filgotinib (FIL) but, in subjects with severe RI, exposure to the FIL metabolite was increased. FIL is a selective JAK1 inhibitor that is extensively, rapidly and proportionately absorbed after oral dosing from 50–200mg. Its major metabolite has a similar JAK1 selectivity profile but with reduced potency. In humans, exposure to the metabolite is higher by approximately 16–20 fold compared with the pare...

Keywords: JAK, Filgotinib, Preclinical, PK-PD

November 18

Efficacy and Safety of Filgotinib, a Selective Janus Kinase 1 Inhibitor, in Patients with Active Psoriatic Arthritis (EQUATOR): Results from a Randomised, Placebo-controlled, Phase 2 Trial

Mease P, Coates LC, Helliwell PS, Stanislavchuk M, Rychlewska-Hanczewska A, Dudek A, Abi-Saab W, Tasset C, Meuleners L, Harrison P, Besuyen R, Van der Aa A, Mozafarian N, Greer JM, Kunder R, Van den Bosch F, Gladman DD.
Lancet. 2018 Dec 1;392(10162):2367-2377. DOI 10.1016/ S0140-6736(18)32483-8

In this first clinical trial of filgotinib in patients with PsA, filgotinib was effective in treating the signs and symptoms of active PsA across various disease manifestations. The EQUATOR trial was a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, Phase 2 trial, that enrolled 191 adult patients from 25 sites in seven countries. Patients with active moderate-to-severe PsA and an insufficient response or intolerance to at least one csDMARD were assigned 1:1 to receive filgotinib 200 mg or placebo...

Keywords: JAK, Filgotinib, Clinical, Phase 2

October 18

A Network Meta-Analysis Comparing Efficacy and Safety of Tofacitinib and Baricitinib

Bae SC and Lee YH.
Z Rheumatol. 2018 Sep 6. DOI 10.1007/s00393-018-0531-5

Tofacitinib (TOF) 10mg and baricitinib (BARI) 4mg, in combination with methotrexate (MTX), were the most efficacious treatments in RA patients with an inadequate response to DMARDs or biologics. Both combination treatments presented acceptable safety profiles and were not associated with a significant risk of serious adverse events. This study employed a Bayesian approach to Meta-Analysis; combining the available evidence across a network of Randomised Controlled trials (RCTs). Twelve RCTs cont...

Keywords: JAK, Tofacitinib, Clinical, Phase 3

Dose Reduction of Baricitinib in Patients with Rheumatoid Arthritis Achieving Sustained Disease Control: Results of a Prospective Study

Takeuchi T, Genovese MC, Haraoui B, Li Z, Xie L, Klar R, Pinto Correia A, Otawa S, Lopez-Romero P, de la Torre I, Rooney TP, Smolen JS.
Ann Rheum Dis. 2019 Feb;78(2):171-178. DOI 10.1136/annrheumdis-2018-213271

In active RA patients, with an inadequate response (IR) to DMARDs who achieve low disease activity (LDA) following baricitinib (BARI) 4 mg treatment, disease control is better maintained with continued BARI 4 mg compared to tapering to 2 mg. The objective of this study was to investigate the effect of BARI tapering in patients achieving sustained disease control with BARI 4 mg. In the long-term extension study RA-BEYOND, patients receiving BARI 4 mg who achieved sustained LDA or remission at two...

Keywords: JAK, Baricitinib, Clinical, Phase 3

Safety Profile of Baricitinib in Patients with Active Rheumatoid Arthritis with over 2 Years Median Time in Treatment

Smolen J, Genovese M, Takeuchi T, Hyslop D, Macias W, Rooney T, Chen L, Dickson C, Riddle Camp J, Cardillo T, Ishii T and Winthrop K.
J Rheumatol. 2019 Jan;46(1):7-18. DOI: 10.3899/jrheum.171361

Baricitinib (BARI) showed an acceptable 5.5-year safety profile in this integrated analysis of patients with moderate-to-severe, active RA. This study evaluated the safety profile of the oral, once daily Janus kinase inhibitor, BARI, in adults with moderately to severely active RA. Data from eight randomised clinical trials and one long-term extension study were pooled and analysed for placebo comparison and dose response. There were 3492 patients who received BARI for a total of 6637 patient-y...

Keywords: JAK, Baricitinib, Clinical, Phase 3

September 18

Lipid Profile and Effect of Statin Treatment in Pooled Phase II and Phase III Baricitinib Studies

Taylor PC, Kremer JM, Emery P, Zuckerman SH, Ruotolo G, Zhong J, Chen L, Witt S, Saifan C, Kurzawa M, Otvos JD, Connelly MA, Macias WL, Schlichting DE, Rooney TP, de Bono S, McInnes IB.
Ann Rheum Dis. 2018 Jul;77(7):988-995. DOI 10.1136/annrheumdis-2017-212461

Baricitinib (BARI) was associated with increased lipid levels; baseline statins did not alter these profiles. The introduction of statins during treatment reduced total cholesterol and LDL-C. The use of anti-inflammatory drugs in RA patients has been shown to alter lipid levels and is associated with reduced atherogenic risk. Increases in lipid levels, specifically HDL-C and LDL-C, have been observed in Phase 2 BARI studies1. This study analysed data from seven randomised RA Phase 2/3 studies o...

Keywords: JAK, Baricitinib, Real World, Cardiovascular

Sustained Response Following Discontinuation of Methotrexate in Patients with Rheumatoid Arthritis Treated with Subcutaneous Tocilizumab

Kremer JM, Rigby W, Singer NG, Birchwood C, Gill D, Reiss W, Pei J, Michalska M.
Arthritis Rheumatol 2018;70:1200–08 DOI 10.1002/art.40493

The COMP-ACT study showed patients achieving low disease activity (LDA) with tocilizumab (TCZ) plus methotrexate (MTX) can discontinue MTX, while maintaining disease control for up to 16 weeks. Previous studies have shown TCZ to be efficacious as a monotherapy or in combination with MTX in patients with RA1,2. Patients frequently discontinue taking DMARDs, such as MTX, due to intolerance or adverse events. COMP-ACT is a randomised, double-blind, 52-week study evaluating the sustained efficacy of...

Keywords: IL-6, Tocilizumab, Clinical, Efficacy

August 18

Two Years of Sarilumab in Patients with Rheumatoid Arthritis and an Inadequate Response to MTX: Safety, Efficacy and Radiographic Outcomes

Genovese MC, van Adelsberg J, Fan C, Graham NMH, van Hoogstraten H, Parrino J, Mangan EK, Spindler A, Huizinga TWJ, van der Heijde D, for the EXTEND study investigators.
Rheumatology 2018;57:1423–1431 DOI: 10.1093/rheumatology/key121

Two-year treatment of active, moderate-to-severe RA with sarilumab, along with dose reduction in the event of laboratory abnormalities, resulted in durable efficacy outcomes and a safety profile consistent with previous reports involving IL-6R inhibition. Durable long-term safety and efficacy, reduced joint damage progression, and conserving health-related quality of life and work productivity are important goals of therapy in RA.1 Sarilumab significantly reduced disease activity, improved phy...

Keywords: IL-6, Sarilumab, Clinical, Safety

July 18

Sarilumab for Previously-Treated Moderate or Severe Rheumatoid Arthritis: An Evidence Review Group Perspective of a NICE Single Technology Appraisal

Bermejo I, Ren S, Simpson E, Clowes M, Scott DL, Young A, Stevenson M.
Pharmacoeconomics. 2018 Dec;36(12):1427-1437. doi: 10.1007/s40273-018-0677-7

In this National Institute for Health and Care (NICE) single technology appraisal of sarilumab (SAR) monotherapy and combination therapy with methotrexate (MTX), SAR was considered to have similar efficacy to other bDMARDs for treating moderate-to-severe RA with inadequate response to cDMARDs or TNFis. SAR was also considered a cost-effective use of National Health Service (NHS) resources versus some or all of its comparators in most considered populations. NICE is an independent organisation r...

Keywords: IL-6, Sarilumab, Clinical, Phase 3

Thromboembolism with Janus Kinase (JAK) Inhibitor for Rheumatoid Arthritis: How Real is the Risk?

Scott IC, Hider SL, Scott DL.
Drug Safety 2018 Jul;41(7):645–53

Current data suggests that JAK inhibitors may increase the risk of thromboembolism and pulmonary thrombosis (PT) in RA. Two JAK inhibitors – baricitinib (BARI) and tofacitinib (TOF) – are considered effective treatments for RA, however, there are concerns about the thromboembolic risks associated with them. In August 2017, the summary of product characteristics for BARI was revised to include a warning of developing DVT and pulmonary embolism (PE), with recommendations that BARI sho...

Keywords: JAK, Baricitinib, Clinical, Safety

June 18

Long-term Radiographic and Patient-reported Outcomes in Patients with Rheumatoid Arthritis Treated with Tofacitinib: ORAL Start and ORAL Scan Post-hoc Analyses

Strand V, Kavanaugh A, Kivitz AJ, van der Heijde D, Kwok K, Akylbekova E, Soonasra A, Snyder M, Connell C, Bananis E, Smolen JS.
Rheumatol Ther. 2018 Dec;5(2):341-353. doi: 10.1007/s40744-018-0113-7

Tofacitinib (TOF) therapy reduced the progression of structural joint damage at 2 years, in patients of all disease states, compared with patients given methotrexate (MTX). Early intervention with DMARDs aim to prevent the development of future RA symptoms and inhibit the progression of structural damage to the joints. This post-hoc analysis uses data from two Phase 3 TOF studies, to examine the efficacy of early intervention with TOF on long-term radiographic outcomes and disease activity sta...

Keywords: JAK, Tofacitinib, Clinical, Radiographic

May 18

Pharmacokinetics of Upadacitinib with Clinical Regimens of the Extended-Release Formulation Utilized in Rheumatoid Arthritis Phase 3 Trials

Mohamed MEF, Zeng J, Marroum PJ, Song IH, Othman AA.
Clin Pharmacol Drug Dev. 2019 Feb;8(2):208-216. doi: 10.1002/cpdd.462

Upadacitinib (UPA) extended release (ER) formulation dosing achieved the target profile that enables single dosing in patients with RA. In early clinical studies, UPA was given as an immediate release (IR) formulation, however patients were noted to experience fluctuations in blood plasma concentrations. To enhance patient compliance in UPA Phase 3 trials, ER tablets have been developed. Here, authors aimed at characterising the pharmacokinetics of UPA single and multiple doses of ER compared ...

Keywords: JAK, Upadacitinib, Preclinical, PK-PD

Analysis of Spontaneous Postmarket Case Reports Submitted to the FDA Regarding Thromboembolic Adverse Events and JAK Inhibitors

Verden A, Dimbil M, Kyle R, Overstreet B, Hoffman KB.
Drug Saf 2018 Apr; 41(4):357–61 DOI: 10.1007/s40264-017-0622-2

Thromboembolic-related adverse events (AEs) were, in general, not considered a class-wide safety concern after analysis of tofacitinib (TOF) and ruxolitinib (RUX) clinical data, though pulmonary thrombosis is considered a potential class-wide safety issue and portal vein thrombosis was considered a potential safety issue for RUX. During analysis of baricitinib (BARI) clinical trial data, the FDA expressed concerns regarding thromboembolic events. Following this, the CHMP have recently added a ...

Keywords: JAK, Tofacitinib, Clinical, Safety

Tofacitinib in Rheumatoid Arthritis: Lack of Early Change in Disease Activity Predicts a Low Probability of Achieving Low Disease Activity at Month 6

Van Vollenhoven RF, Lee EB, Fallon L, Zwillich SH, Wilkinson B, Chapman D, Demasi R, Keystone E.
Arthritis Care Res (Hoboken) 2019 Jan;71(1):71-79. DOI: 10.1002/acr.23585

This post-hoc analysis of two, Phase 3 studies, ORAL Start and ORAL Standard shows that early treatment response can predict long-term disease activity outcomes. EULAR recommendations suggest that treat-to-target strategies require regular target assessments with treatment approaches changed if targets are not reached at 6 months. To optimize this strategy, therapy outcomes should be known, and the relationship between short and long-term outcomes defined. The current analysis focused on the d...

Keywords: JAK, Tofacitinib, Clinical, Efficacy

Evaluation of Disease Activity in Patients with Rheumatoid Arthritis Treated with Tofacitinib by RAPID3: Post Hoc Analyses from Two Phase 3 Trials

Strand V, Lee EB, Yazici Y, Dikranian A, Wilkinson B, Takiya L, Zang C, Bananis E, Bergman MJ.
Clin Rheumatol 2018 Aug; 37(8):2043–53

Patients given tofacitinib (TOF) who achieved Routine Assessment of Patient Index Data 3 (RAPID3) remission or low disease activity (LDA) at 6 months, had improved long-term outcomes at 2 years, compared to patients with moderate or high disease activity (MDA/HDA) at 6 months. RAPID3¹ is a patient-reported evaluation of disease activity, based on pooled PROs; patient global assessment, patient assessment of arthritic pain and HAQ-DI scores. Previous studies with tocilizumab have suggested ...

Keywords: JAK, Tofacitinib, Clinical, PRO

April 18

Tofacitinib for Treating Rheumatoid Arthritis After the Failure of Disease-Modifying Anti-Rheumatic Drugs: An Evidence Review Group Perspective of a NICE Single Technology Appraisal

Uttley L, Bermejo I, Shijie R, Martyn-St James M, Wong R, Scott DL, Young A, Stevenson M.
Pharmacoeconomics 2018 Sep; 36(9): 1063–72

In this National Institute for Health and Care (NICE) single technology appraisal of tofacitinib (TOF) plus methotrexate (MTX), TOF had similar efficacy and comparable costs to recommended bDMARDs plus MTX in patients with RA. NICE is an independent organisation responsible for providing national guidance on health technologies in England. To be recommended by NICE, the company must provide evidence to prove TOF’s effectiveness, both clinically and costly. This evidence based review, rep...

Keywords: JAK, Tofacitinib, Clinical, Phase 3

Effect of Filgotinib, a Selective JAK1 Inhibitor, with or without Methotrexate in Patients with Rheumatoid Arthritis: Patient-Reported Outcomes

Genovese MC, Westhovens R, Meuleners L, van der Aa A, Harrison P, Tasset C, Kavanaugh A.
Arthritis Res Ther 2018; 20(1):57 doi: 10.1186/s13075-018-1541-z

Patient-reported outcomes (PROs) from two, Phase 2b, filgotinib (FIL) studies, DARWIN 1 and 2, revealed that patients receiving FIL had improved and sustained PRO responses compared with placebo. With suboptimal RA treatment, patients lose joint functional ability, which heavily influences patient quality of life. The previously reported data from the DARWIN studies, concluded that patients given FIL achieved clinically relevant dose-dependent improvements compared with patients given placebo&s...

Keywords: JAK, Filgotinib, Clinical, PRO

February 18

Tapering versus Steady-state Methotrexate in Combination with Tocilizumab for Rheumatoid Arthritis: a Randomised, Double-blind Trial

Edwards CJ, Ӧstӧr AJK, Naisbett-Groet B, Kiely P.
Rheumatology (Oxford) 2018;57(1):84–91

Methotrexate (MTX) tapering in patients with active, severe RA receiving intravenous tocilizumab (TCZ) was non-inferior to continuing stable MTX doses in maintaining a good/moderate EULAR response. Although MTX and bDMARD combination therapy may produce better response rates than bDMARD monotherapy, one third of patients discontinue or are non-compliant with MTX due to preference or toxicity. This randomised, non-inferiority study investigated the efficacy and tolerability of MTX tapering and ...

Keywords: IL-6, Tocilizumab, Clinical, Phase 3

December 17

Successful Treatment of Arthritis Induced by Checkpoint Inhibitors with Tocilizumab: a Case Series

Kim ST, Tayar J, Trinh VA, Suarez-Almazor M, Garcia S, Hwu P, Johnson DH, Uemura M, Diab A.
Ann Rheum Dis 2017;76:2061-64. doi: 10.1136/annrheumdis-2017-211560

This case series evaluated the use of tocilizumab (TCZ) as an effective treatment for patients who develop arthritis as an adverse event (AE) of immune checkpoint inhibitor (ICI) cancer treatment. Results suggested that TCZ was an effective treatment, as it reduced the arthritis disease progression. ICIs have been defined as a revolutionary treatment for metastatic melanomas; however, a common AE is the development of polyarthritis. Current arthritis treatments reduce the efficiency of ICI thera...

Keywords: IL-6, Tocilizumab, Clinical, PRO

Tofacitinib Therapy for Rheumatoid Arthritis: A Direct Comparison Study between Biologic-naive and Experienced Patients

Mori S, Yoshitama T, Ueki Y.
Intern Med. 2018 Mar 1;57(5):663-670. doi: 10.2169/internalmedicine.9341-17

This 6-month prospective direct comparison study analysed the effectiveness of tofacitinib (TOF) therapy on bDMARD-naïve and bDMARD-experienced patients. bDMARD-naïve patients were more responsive to TOF therapy than bDMARD-experienced patients. The study analysed the data of 113 patients diagnosed with high or moderate disease activity, defined using CDAI scores. All patients had failed to achieve CDAI low disease activity or remission with MTX therapy for ≥3 months. Patients were...

Keywords: JAK, Tofacitinib, Clinical, Efficacy

October 17

Lymphoma in the Tofacitinib Rheumatoid Arthritis Clinical Development Program

Mariette X, Chen C, Biswas P, Kwok K, Boy MG.
Arthritis Care Res (Hoboken). 2018 May;70(5):685-694. doi: 10.1002/acr.23421

Analysis of 19 studies involving the use of tofacitinib to treat RA showed that lymphoma incidence rate and type were consistent with expectations in the RA population as a whole, and did not increase with tofacitinib exposure time. Previous research has suggested that there is a link between the likelihood of developing malignant tumours and RA. Previously, it has been unclear whether the increased rates seen are due to the use of immunomodulatory therapies, such as tofacitinib, which are used...

Keywords: JAK, Tofacitinib, Clinical, Safety

August 17

Treatment Persistence and Clinical Outcomes of Tumor Necrosis Factor Inhibitor Cycling or Switching to a New Mechanism of Action Therapy: Real-world Observational Study of Rheumatoid Arthritis Patients in the United States with Prior Tumor Necrosis Factor Inhibitor Therapy

Wei W, Knapp K, Wang L, Chen C-I, Craig GL, Ferguson K Schwartzman S.
Adv Ther. 2017 Aug;34(8):1936-1952. doi: 10.1007/s12325-017-0578-8

This retrospective, observational study used a real-world US clinical database to demonstrate greater effectiveness of switching to a therapy with an alternative mechanism of action (MOA) vs cycling between TNF inhibitors (TNFis) in patients in which TNFi therapy has failed. Between 1 April 2010 and 31 March 2015, a total of 613 of the observed patients failed a TNFi therapy and then either cycled to another TNFi therapy (54.2%) or switched to a therapy with an alternative MOA (45.8%). The most...

Keywords: JAK, Tofacitinib, Real World, Efficacy

July 17

Pathogenetic Insights from the Treatment of Rheumatoid Arthritis

McInnes I, Schett G.
Lancet 2017;389:2328–37 DOI 10.1016/S0140-6736(17)31472-1

This review paper examines the understanding gained from looking at the effects of specific immune interventions in the treatment of RA. The introduction of novel IL-6 agents has provided the ideal opportunity to explore the distinct effect of cytokine inhibition, as opposed to receptor inhibition, at the molecular level. Mechanistic insights into TNF could also be obtained in the future with advanced molecular and informatics approaches, and future biopsy studies will be important to explore t...

Keywords: Cytokine Signalling, Preclinical, MOA

May 17

Discontinuation of Tofacitinib after achieving Low Disease Activity in Patients with Rheumatoid Arthritis: a Multicentere, Observational Study

Kubo S, Yamaoka K, Amano K, Nagano S, Tohma S, Suematsu E, Nagasawa H, Iwata K and Tanaka Y.
Rheumatology. Doi 10.1093/rheumatology/kex068

This study showed that in patients who achieved low disease activity (LDA), it is possible to discontinue tofacitinib without flare in approximately one-third of patients. Patients from the tofacitinib Phase 3 programme and long-term extension study were enroled. Discontinuation was based on physician-patient decision making with informed consent. The primary endpoint was the proportion of patients who remained tofacitinib free at post-treatment Week 52. Of 64 patients treated with tofacitin...

Keywords: JAK, Tofacitinib

March 17

A Phase IIb Study of ABT-494, a Selective JAK-1 Inhibitor, in Patients With Rheumatoid Arthritis and an Inadequate Response to Anti–Tumor Necrosis Factor Therapy

Kremer JM, Emery P, Camp HS, Friedman A, Wang L, Othman AA, Khan N, Pangan AL, Jungerwirth S and Keystone EC.
Arthritis Rheumatol 2016;68:2867–77

The summary and accompanying slide deck have been developed in conjunction with the Genovese et al. study (Study 1) which examined ABT-494 in MTX-IR patients in order to compare and contrast the data. In these two Phase 2b studies, ABT-494 (a novel selective JAK-1 inhibitor) was shown to be effective in patients with active RA who were non-responders to MTX or at least one TNF inhibitor. Patients with active RA who had an inadequate response to MTX (study 1) or were refractory to or intoleran...

Keywords: JAK, Upadacitinib, Clinical, Phase 2

Efficacy and Safety of ABT-494, a Selective JAK-1 Inhibitor, in a Phase IIb Study in Patients With Rheumatoid Arthritis and an Inadequate Response to Methotrexate

Genovese MC, Smolen JS, Weinblatt ME, Burmester GR, Meerwein S, Camp HS, Wang L, Othman AA, Khan N, Pangan AL and Jungerwirth S.
Arthritis Rheumatol 2016;68:2857–66

The summary and accompanying slide deck have been developed in conjunction with the Kremer et al. study (Study 2) which examined ABT-494 in TNF-IR patients in order to compare and contrast the data. In these two Phase 2b studies, ABT-494 (a novel selective JAK-1 inhibitor) was shown to be effective in patients with active RA who were non-responders to MTX or at least one TNF inhibitor. Patients with active RA who had an inadequate response to MTX (study 1) or were refractory to or intolerant ...

Keywords: JAK, Upadacitinib, Clinical, Phase 2

Translated by: JAK 1 |

February 17

Tocilizumab Use in Pregnancy: Analysis of a Global Safety Database Including Data from Clinical Trials and Post-marketing Data

Hoeltzenbein M, Beck E, Rajwanshib R, GøtestamSkorpen C, Berberb E, Schaefera C, Østensenc M, .
Semin Arthritis Rheum 2016;46:238–45. DOI 10.1016/j.seminarthrit.2016.05.004.

This dataset is the largest series of tocilizumab (TCZ)-exposed pregnancies to date; considering the limitations of global safety databases, the data presented provide information to assist physicians and patients in making informed decisions. At present, published experience on TCZ use during pregnancy is very limited. In the current analysis, all pregnancy-related reports in the Roche Global Safety Database until December 31, 2014 were analysed. Outcomes assessed included: spontaneous abortio...

Keywords: IL-6, Tocilizumab, Clinical, Safety

January 17

Evaluation of Real-World Experience with Tofacitinib Compared with Adalimumab, Etanercept, and Abatacept in RA Patients with 1 Previous Biologic DMARD: Data from a U.S. Administrative Claims Database

Harnett J, Gerber R, Gruben D, Koenig AS and Chen C.
J Manag Care Spec Pharm. 2016 Dec;22(12):1457-1471.

Data were examined to compare patient characteristics, treatment patterns and costs in patients with RA receiving tofacitinib (TOF) or common bDMARDs (adalimumab [ADA], etanercept (ETN) or abatacept [ABA]) who had previously received a single bDMARD. This study analyses real-world data from two US claims databases between November 2012 and October 2014. Data were collected from a total of 1252 patients in the Truven Marketscan Commercial and Medicare Supplemental databases. Pre-index (12-month...

Keywords: JAK, Tofacitinib, Real World, Value

July 16

Efficacy and safety of the oral Janus kinase inhibitor peficitinib (ASP015K) monotherapy in patients with moderate to severe rheumatoid arthritis in Japan:�a 12-week, randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled phase IIb study

Takeuchi et al.
Ann Rheum Dis. 2016 Jun;75:1057-64. doi: 10.1136/annrheumdis-2015-208279. Epub 2015 Dec 15

Peficitinib (ASP015K) is a novel orally bioavailable JAK inhibitor in development for the treatment of RA. It inhibits JAK1, JAK2, JAK3 and Tyk2 enzyme activities and has moderate selectivity or JAK3 inhibition. Here the authors report the findings of a 12-week, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled phase IIb study evaluating efficacy, safety and dose response of peficitinib (25, 50, 100, or 150 mg) as once-daily oral monotherapy in Japanese patients with moderate to severe RA. The prim...

Keywords: JAK, Peficitinib, Clinical, Phase 2

May 16

The Efficacy and Safety of Clazakizumab, an Anti-Interleukin-6 Monoclonal Antibody, in a Phase 2b Study of Adults with Active Psoriatic Arthritis

Mease et al.
Arthritis Rheumatol. 2016 Mar 24. DOI 10.1002/art.39700 [Epub ahead of print]

Encouraging results have been seen with clazakizumab in RA, but the results of anti-IL6 therapy in patients with psoriatic arthritis (PsA) have so far been unclear. This Phase 2b dose-ranging study examined the efficacy and safety of clazakizumab given subcutaneously q4w, with or without MTX, in 165 patients with PsA who had inadequate response to NSAIDs. ACR20 response at Week 16, the primary endpoint, was significantly higher in patients receiving clazakizumab 100 mg compared with placebo (52...

Keywords: IL-6, Clazakizumab, Clinical, Phase 2

Extended-release once-daily formulation of tofacitinib: evaluation of pharmacokinetics compared with immediate-release tofacitinib and impact of food

Lamba et al.
J Clin Pharmacol. 2016 Mar 11. doi: 10.1002/jcph.734. [Epub ahead of print]

PK profile of TOF is rapid absorption and elimination with time to max concentration 0.5-1 hour and terminal half-life at 3 hours. It is currently approved for immediate release (IR) 5 mg BID, 10 mg total; however, decreasing the dosage to QD dosing may help increase compliance. This study performed in 24 healthy males compared the PK of XR and IR TOF under both single and multiple dose conditions and evaluated the effect of a high-fat meal on the PK of XR TOF. There were no clinically importa...

Keywords: JAK, Tofacitinib, Preclinical, PK-PD

March 16

Comparison of adding tocilizumab to methotrexate with switching to tocilizumab in patients with rheumatoid arthritis with inadequate response to methotrexate: 52-week results from a prospective, randomised, controlled study (SURPRISE study)

Kaneko et al.
Ann Rheum Dis 2016 Jan 5 DOI: 10.1136/annrheumdis-2015-208426 [Epub ahead of print

MTX is the primary drug in RA management because of its long-term effectiveness and safety profile; however, in patients who have insufficient response (IR) to MTX, treatment adjustments are needed – either to combine a bDMARD with MTX or to switch to a bDMARD from MTX. In the SURPRISE study, the efficacy and safety of adding TCZ to MTX (ADD-ON) or switching MTX to TCZ (SWITCH) was evaluated in 233 patients with moderate to highly active RA who were randomised 1:1. Both treatment groups we...

Keywords: IL-6, Tocilizumab, Clinical, Phase 3

December 15

Incidence and complications of interstitial lung disease in users of tocilizumab, rituximab, abatacept and anti-tumor necrosis factor α agents, a retrospective cohort study

Curtis JR, Sarsour K, Napalkov P, Costa LA, and Schulman KL.
Arthritis Research & Therapy (2015) 17:319 DOI: 10.1186/s13075-015-0835-7

Interstitial lung disease (ILD) is a common extra-articular condition for RA patients. This retrospective cohort study of health insurance databases investigates the ILD incidence and exacerbation between ABA, TCZ, RTX, and anti-TNFα agents in adult RA patients with prior biologic therapy. Two definitions of ILD were used: one specific, one sensitive; descriptive results were produced for both. In patients with no history of ILD, the overall incidence rate of ILD ranged from 1.8% to 6.4%...

Keywords: IL-6, Tocilizumab, Real World, Infections

October 15

Cost-effectiveness of Tofacitinib in the Treatment of Moderate to Severe Rheumatoid Arthritis in South Korea

Min-Young Lee, Sun-Kyeong Park, Sun-Young Park, Ji-Hye Byun, Sang-Min Lee, Su-Kyoung Ko, and Eui-Kyung Lee.
Clinical Therapeutics. 2015:37(8). [Epub ahead of print]

This study evaluated the cost-effectiveness of introducing tofacitinib, an oral Janus kinase inhibitor, to the treatment of Korean patients with RA and an inadequate response to conventional DMARDs. The model showed that the inclusion of tofacitinib as a treatment strategy for moderate to severe RA is cost-effective; this conclusion was considered robust based on multiple sensitivity analyses. First-line tofacitinib used before the standard of care (base-case analysis) increased both treatment...

Keywords: JAK, Tofacitinib, Real World, Value

Comparison of the efficacies of abatacept and tocilizumab in patients with rheumatoid arthritis by propensity score matching

Kubo S, Nakayamada S, Nakano K, Hirata S, Fukuyo S, Miyagawa I, Hanami K, Saito K, Tanaka Y.
Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases. 2015 Aug 5. doi:pii: annrheumdis-2015-207784. 10.1136/annrheumdis-2015-207784. [Epub ahead of print]

This study compared the clinical outcomes at one year after the treatment either abatacept or tocilizumab in routine clinical practice. This study employed propensity score matching and demonstrated that abatacept and tocilizumab had comparable continuing efficacies, and that treatment with the drugs resulted in comparable clinical and functional remission rates. Additionally, abatacept and tocilizumab showed similar effectiveness with or without MTX. While clinical efficacies, including SDAI,...

Keywords: IL-6, Tocilizumab, Clinical, Efficacy

Calprotectin more accurately discriminates the disease status of rheumatoid arthritis patients receiving tocilizumab than acute phase reactants

José Inciarte-Mundo, Virginia Ruiz-Esquide, Maria Victoria Hernández, Juan D Cañete, Sonia Raquel Cabrera-Villalba, Julio Ramirez, Jordi Yagüe and Raimon Sanmarti.
Rheumatology. 2015 Aug 4. doi:pii: kev251. [Epub ahead of print]

Calprotectin is a member of the S100 protein family that has strong pro-inflammatory effects that reflect local ongoing inflammation rather than systemic response, due to its release at local inflammation sites. High calprotectin levels have been found in SF and serum from RA patients and correlate with disease activity. This study analysed the accuracy of calprotectin compared to acute phase response in discriminating the clinical disease status of RA patients receiving TCZ. A clinical assessme...

Keywords: IL-6, Tocilizumab, Preclinical, MOA

May 15

Evaluation of the effect of tofacitinib on measured glomerular filtration rate in patients with active rheumatoid arthritis: results from a randomised controlled trial

Kremer JM, Kivitz AJ, Simon-Campos JA, Nasonov EL, Tony HP, Lee SK, Vlahos B, Hammond C, Bukowski J, Li H, Schulman SL, Raber S, Zuckerman A, Isaacs JD.
Arthritis Res Ther. 2015 Apr 6;17(1):95.

Mean increases from baseline in patient serum creatinine (SCr) levels have been observed in the clinical development programme for the JAK inhibitor tofacitinib. These increases predominantly occurred within the first three months, and reversed with tofacitinib withdrawal. This phase 1, randomised, placebo-controlled, parallel-group, 2-period study assessed changes in measured glomerular filtration rate (mGFR) with tofacitinib, relative to placebo, in 148 patients with active RA. Results sh...

Keywords: JAK, Tofacitinib, Preclinical, MOA

Tofacitinib, an oral Janus kinase inhibitor: analysis of malignancies across the rheumatoid arthritis clinical development programme

Curtis JR, Lee EB, Kaplan IV, Kwok K, Geier J, Benda B, Soma K, Wang L, Riese R.
Ann Rheum Dis. 2015 Apr 22. pii: annrheumdis-2014-205847. doi: 10.1136/annrheumdis-2014-205847. [Epub ahead of print]

The developments of certain malignancies associated with chronic inflammatory diseases such as RA is known to occur to a greater extent than that of the general population. It is also know that certain RA treatments can affect malignancy rates. As such, newer immunomodulatory agents, such as the JAK inhibitor tofacitinib, are closely monitored for safety events of special interest, including malignancies. This paper analyses pooled malignancy data from the tofacitinib RA clinical development...

Keywords: JAK, Tofacitinib, Malignancy

April 15

Super-enhancers delineate disease-associated regulatory nodes in T cells

Vahedi G, Kanno Y, Furumoto Y, Jiang K, Parker SC, Erdos MR, Davis SR, Roychoudhuri R, Restifo NP, Gadina M, Tang Z, Ruan Y, Collins FS, Sartorelli V, O'Shea JJ.
Nature. 2015 Feb 16. doi: 10.1038/nature14154. [Epub ahead of print]

Transcription machinery (proteins responsible for activating or ‘switching off’ genes) is not distributed in the genome in a symmetrical (or even) manner. Some parts of the genome, so called super-enhancers (SEs), accumulate an exceptionally high level of proteins relevant to the regulation of transcription (i.e. the machinery is concentrated in particular parts of the genome). In this paper, the investigators asked about the locale of these regions in the genome of T cells. Then th...

Keywords: Cytokine Signalling, Preclinical, MOA

The effect of tofacitinib on pneumococcal and influenza vaccine responses in rheumatoid arthritis

Winthrop KL, Silverfield J, Racewicz A, Neal J, Lee EB, Hrycaj P, Gomez-Reino J, Soma K, Mebus C, Wilkinson B, Hodge J, Fan H, Wang T, Bingham CO 3rd.
Ann Rheum Dis. 2015 Mar 20. pii: annrheumdis-2014-207191. doi: 10.1136/annrheumdis-2014-207191. [Epub ahead of print]

The increased risk of serious infection among RA patients means vaccinations against pneumococcus and influenza are recommended in this group of patients. Studies evaluating immune response to these vaccines in conjunction with DMARD therapy can provide clinicians with important information relating to things such as timing of vaccination. This study aimed to assess the effect of tofacitinib on vaccine responses to PPSV-23 and the trivalent seasonal influenza vaccine in those whom tofacitinib...

Keywords: JAK, Tofacitinib, Clinical, Safety

March 15

A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled, Twelve-Week, Dose-Ranging Study of Decernotinib, an Oral Selective JAK-3 Inhibitor, as Monotherapy in Patients With Active Rheumatoid Arthritis

Fleischmann RM, Damjanov NS, Kivitz AJ, et al.
Arthritis Rheumatol. 2015;67(2):334–343.

Decernotinib (VX-509; Vertex Pharmaceuticals Incorporated) is a JAK 3 inhibitor currently under investigation for its potential use in the treatment of RA. The potency and selectivity profiles of this oral compound have already been established in previous trials, so this study aimed to establish the efficacy and safety profiles of the drug, in RA patients who have had an inadequate response to at least one DMARD. Four doses; 25 mg, 50 mg, 100 mg and 150 mg, were evaluated in this placebo-contr...

Keywords: JAK, Decernotinib, Clinical, Phase 2

A small-molecule inhibitor of the NLRP3 inflammasome for the treatment of inflammatory diseases

Coll RC, Robertson AA, Chae JJ, et al.
Nat Med. 2015 Feb 16. doi: 10.1038/nm.3806. [Epub ahead of print]

A team of scientists at Trinity College Dublin and the University of Queensland Australia, led by Professor Luke O'Neill, have identified a key molecule that may result in the development of new anti-inflammatory therapies for diseases such as: cryopyrin-associated periodic syndrome (CAPS), multiple sclerosis, type 2 diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease and atherosclerosis. Professor O'Neill and his team have identified MCC950 as a potent, selective, small-molecule inhibitor of the ...

Keywords: Cytokine Signalling, Preclinical, MOA

January 15

Potential Mechanisms Leading to the Abnormal Lipid Profile in Patients With Rheumatoid Arthritis Versus Healthy Volunteers and Reversal by Tofacitinib

Charles-Schoeman C, Fleischmann R, Davignon J, Schwartz H, Turner S, Beysen C, Milad M, Hellerstein M, Luo Z, Kaplan I, Riese R, Zuckerman A, McInnes IB.
Arthritis Rheumatol. 2015;67(3):616-25.

Active RA is associated with changes in both high- and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol as well as changes in the level and function of several HDL-associated proteins, yet the pathways and mechanisms involved with systemic inflammation altered lipid metabolism have not been determined. In addition, treatments for active RA are known to modify lipid metabolism, such as increasing circulating cholesterol levels. In the clinical development programme, a proportion of tofacitinib-treated patien...

Keywords: Cytokine Signalling, Preclinical, MOA

December 14

The JAK inhibitor tofacitinib suppresses synovial JAK1-STAT signalling in rheumatoid arthritis

Boyle DL, Soma K, Hodge J, Kavanaugh A, Mandel D, Mease P, Shurmur R, Singhal AK, Wei N, Rosengren S, Kaplan I, Krishnaswami S, Luo Z, Bradley J, Firestein GS.
Ann Rheum Dis. 2014 Nov 14. pii: annrheumdis-2014-206028. doi: 10.1136/annrheumdis-2014-206028. [Epub ahead of print]

Targeting intracellular pathways such as JAK/STAT represents a novel approach to the treatment of RA. Tofacitinib is an oral JAK inhibitor, proven to be effective in the treatment of RA, yet the pathways affected by tofacitinib and the effects on gene expression in situ are unknown. In this study, Boyle et al. tested the hypothesis that tofacitinib targets cytokine signalling critical to the pathogenesis of rheumatoid synovitis by investigating tofacitinib effects on synovial pathobiology. A...

Keywords: JAK, Tofacitinib, Preclinical, MOA

An evaluation of risk factors for major adverse cardiovascular events during tocilizumab therapy

Rao VU, Pavlov A, Klearman M, Musselman D, Giles JT, Bathon JM, Sattar N, Lee JS.
Arthritis Rheumatol. 2015;67(2):372–380

The risk of cardiovascular (CV) disease among RA patients, compared with the general population is well documented. Alongside this, studies have been able to establish that risk factors in RA patients are not wholly associated with traditional CV risk factors such as such as diabetes mellitus, hypertension, smoking, and dyslipidemia, suggesting a relationship between parameters of RA disease activity and increased CV risk. Additionally, IL-6 has been linked with the development of coronary heart...

Keywords: IL-6, Tocilizumab, Cardiovascular

August 14

Changes in serum creatinine in patients with active rheumatoid arthritis treated with tofacitinib: results from clinical trials

Isaacs JD, Zuckerman A, Krishnaswami S, et al.
Arthritis Res Ther. 2014;16(4):R158

Despite preclinical and healthy volunteer studies of tofacitinib showing no evidence of nephrotoxicity, increases in mean serum creatinine levels have been observed in patients treated with the drug during the RA clinical development programme. This report explores the clinical significance of this change. Serum creatinine values and renal adverse event data were pooled from patients who received =1 dose of tofacitinib either with background DMARDs or as monotherapy in five Phase 3 studies a...

Keywords: JAK, Tofacitinib, Preclinical, MOA

June 14

Mechanism of Activation of Protein Kinase JAK2 by the Growth Hormone Receptor

Brooks AJ, Dai W, O’Mara ML et al.
Science 344, 2014; doi: 10.1126/science.1249783

Class I cytokine receptors are key regulators of many processes within the body. The receptors use the JAK-STAT signalling pathway, the deregulation of which causes it to become an important pathway in oncogenesis. Despite this, the processes responsible for JAK2 activation by class I receptors remains elusive. Previous studies using growth hormone and its receptor have led to a model of receptor activation where hormone induced receptor dimerization resulted in close proximity of the receptor ...

Keywords: JAK, Preclinical, MOA

May 14

JAK2-STAT3 Blockade by AG490 Suppresses Autoimmune Arthritis in Mice via Reciprocal Regulation of Regulatory T cells and Th17 cells

Park JS, Lee J, Lim MA et al.
J Immunol 2014; 192:4417-4424

In this study, Park et al sought to investigate the effects of the JAK2 inhibitor, AG490 in RA. Using murine CIA models, both preventative and therapeutic models were investigated. In the preventative model, CIA mice treated with AG490 showed a significantly lower incidence rate of arthritis and arthritic scores when compared to mice injected with vehicle. In the therapeutic model, as in the preventative, AG490 treated mice exhibited less severe arthritis. Through further experiments, it was de...

Keywords: JAK, Preclinical, MOA

Btk inhibition suppresses agonist-induced human macrophage activation and inflammatory gene expression in RA synovial tissue explants

Hartkamp LM, Fine JS, van Es IE et al.
Ann Rheum Dis Published Online First 24 April 2014 doi:10.1136/annrheumdis-2013-204143

Bruton’s tyrosine kinase, a downstream target of PI3K signalling, has been shown to be crucial in the B lymphocyte and myeloid cell contribution to murine models of arthritis. Synovial tissue samples were taken from biologically naïve RA (n=16) and PsA (n=12) patients in order to assess the expression of BTK. Separate RA synovial explants (n=8) were used to assess the effects of the specific BTK inhibitor RN486. BTK was expressed at equivalent levels in both RA and PsA synovial tissu...

Keywords: BTK, Preclinical, MOA

14-3-3eta is a novel mediator associated with the pathogenesis of rheumatoid arthritis and joint damage

Maksymowych WP, van der Heijde D, Allaart CF et al.
Arthritis Research and Therapy 2014, 16:R99

A major clinical imperative among rheumatologists is the ability to class patients into risk categories for radiographic progression. Indeed, identification of new independent biomarkers predictive of RA disease progression is a key target from OMERACT. This study by Maksymowych et al. sought to clarify the role of 14-3-3? in RA and whether it provided any clinically and/or serologically important prognostic information. First described as being elevated in RA in 2007, 14-3-3? has a strong corre...

Keywords: Cytokine Signalling, Preclinical, MOA

April 14

Hypoxia and STAT3 signalling interactions regulate pro-inflammatory pathways in rheumatoid arthritis

Gao W, McCormick J, Connolly M et al.
. ARD published online first 13 Feb 2014. Doi: 10.1136/annrheumdis-2013-204105

Hypoxia is a key driving force in joint inflammation, however little is known about the effect it can have on JAK/STAT signalling in rheumatoid arthritis. Due to the development of JAK inhibitors as therapeutics it is important to understand any links there may be. Previous studies have shown that HIF1a, a protein associated with hypoxia, facilitates the binding of STAT3 to haptoglobin promoter in HepG2 human hepatoma cells. HIF1a also requires interaction of Notch signalling pathways with STAT3...

Keywords: Cytokine Signalling, Preclinical, MOA

March 14

Features of the synovium of individuals at risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis

de Hair MJH, van de Sande MGH, Ramwadhdoebe TH et al.
Arthritis and Rheumatology March 2014:66;513-522

This study expands on previous findings that synovial inflammation does not coincide with the appearance of rheumatoid arthritis. This was a markedly larger study compared to previous, with 55 individuals assessed. All 55 subjects were positive for IgM rheumatoid factor and/or anti-citrillinated protein antibody as well as possessing no physical evidence of arthritis. 15 of the individuals tested developed arthritis after a median time of 13 months. In these patients the presence of inflammatory...

Keywords: Preclinical, MOA

Inhibition of TAK1 and/or JAK can rescue impaired chondrogenic differentiation of human mesenchymal stem cells in osteoarthritis-like conditions

Van Beuningen HM, de Vries-van Melle ML, Vitters El et al.
Tissue Engineering Part A doi:10/1089/ten.TEA.2013.0553

As it is nonvascularized and noninnervated, articular cartilage has a limited capacity to repair which presents a major clinical problem. In order to circumvent this inability to repair, stem cells can be placed into the joint or stimulated within the bone marrow. However, as the cartilage requiring repair is often in diseased joints, the factors involved in the disease state are potentially non-beneficial to the chondrogenesis of mesenchymal stem cells. In this study van Beuningen et al. invest...

Keywords: Cytokine Signalling, Preclinical, MOA

January 14

Selective inhibition of spleen tyrosine kinase (SYK) with a novel orally bioavailable small molecule inhibitor, RO9021, impinges on various innate and adaptive immune responses: implication for SYK inhibitors in autoimmune disease therapy

Liao C, Hsu J, Kim Y et al.
Arthritis Research and Therapy 2013 15:R146

Spleen tyrosine kinase (SYK) has already been described as a potential therapeutic target for the treatment of autoimmune diseases. Previously the SYK inhibitor fostamatinib was in clinical development for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis, but has since been suspended. However, investigation into SYK inhibition continues with RO2091, a novel ATP-competitive inhibitor of SYK with reasonable selectivity, potency and oral bioavailability which has been shown to suppress various innate and adap...

Keywords: Cytokine Signalling, Preclinical, Selectivity

STA-21, a promising STAT3 inhibitor that reciprocally regulates Th17 and Treg, inhibits osteoclastgenesis and alleviates autoimmune inflammation

Park JS, Kwok SK, Lim MA et al.
Arthritis and Rheumatism doi: 10.1002/art.38305

STAT3 (signal transducer and activator of transcription 3) is the major transcription factor in the differentiation of Th17 cells, which along with IL-17 are significant in the development of RA. STA-21 is a new small molecule with significant inhibitory effects on STAT3, impeding DNA binding activity, dimerization and STAT3-dependent luciferase activity. While the effect of STA-21 in RA has not been fully determined, it has been hypothesised that STA-21 will suppress arthritis in animal models ...

Keywords: Cytokine Signalling, Preclinical, MOA

The orally available Btk inhibitor ibrutinib (PCI-32765) protects against osteoclast-mediated bone loss

Shinohara M, Chang BY, Buggy JJ et al.
Bone 2014;60:8-15

Ibrutinib is a first-in-class, orally available Btk (Bruton’s tyrosine kinase) inhibitor which has been shown to be effective in the treatment against certain types of leukemia and autoimmune disorders. Btk regulates the expression of genes involved in the differentiation and function of osteoclasts, and therefore inhibiting Btk suppresses osteoclastic bone resorption. Results from in vitro testing showed the suppressive effects on osteoclasts and murine models of RA showed ibrutinib treat...

Keywords: BTK, Preclinical, MOA

October 13

Proposal for a new nomenclature of disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs

Smolen JS et al.
Ann Rheum Dis 2013. doi: 10.1136/annrhuemdis-2013-204317

With the recent emergence of new therapeutics for rheumatoid arthritis, new nomenclature for disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs (DMARDs) may be needed to more accurately describe the new agents. Currently, DMARDs are divided into two broad groups: synthetic DMARDs (sDMARDs) and biological DMARDs (bDMARDs). The authors propose dividing synthetic DMARDs into conventional synthetic DMARDs (csDMARDs) which would encompass traditional DMARDs (e.g. methotrexate, leflunomide), and targeted synthetic...

Keywords: Cytokine Signalling

Inhibition of JAK/STAT signalling pathway in rheumatoid synovial fibroblasts using small molecule compounds

Migita K, Izumi Y, Torigoshi T et al.
Clin Exp Immunol. 2013 Aug 23. doi: 10.1111/cei.12190

Current JAK inhibitors CP-690,550 and INCB020850 have inhibitory effects on multiple JAK pathways, therefore Migita et al. tested whether selective inhibition of JAK3, using PF-956980, would be enough to ameliorate the rheumatoid inflammatory process. The results indicated that the inhibition of JAK3 alone is does not achieve control of STAT3-dependent signalling, and while it is suggested that the targeting of singular JAK pathways should lead to fewer adverse events, it appears that this appro...

Keywords: JAK, Preclinical, MOA

Tofacitinib in combination with nonbiologic disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs in patients with active rheumatoid arthritis

Kremer J, Li ZG, Hall S et al.
Ann Intern Med. 2013;159;253-261

Many patients with active RA have an inadequate response to biologic and nonbiologic DMARDs. Kremer et al carried out a one year, randomized trial studying the efficacy of tofacitinib in conjunction with background nonbiologic DMARDs (primarily methotrexate) in these patients. The results showed that using tofacitinib in combination with nonbiologic DMARDs rapidly improved physical function and reduced signs and symptoms of RA versus placebo, measured by ACR20 rates, DAS28 and HAQ-DI. The data f...

Keywords: JAK, Tofacitinib, Clinical, Phase 3

August 13

Oral administration of GLPG0259, an inhibitor of MAPKAPK5, a new target for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis: a phase II, randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled, multicentre trial

Westhovens R, Keyser FD, Rekalov D, et al.
Ann Rheum Dis. 2013 May; 72(5):741–4

This phase2 trial assessed the efficacy of GLPG0259, a first-in-class ATP-competitive inhibitor of MAPKAPK5. The trail involved 31 patients with active RA and an inadequate response MTX. Patients received either 50 mg/day GLPG0259 with MTX or a placebo with MTX (patients randomised 2:1) for 12 weeks with the primary efficacy variable being ACR 20 response at week 12. Analysis showed that 5 patients (26.3%) in the GLPG0259 group and 3 patients (27.3%) in the placebo group achieved ACR 20 at 12 we...

Keywords: Cytokine Signalling, Clinical, Phase 2

June 13

Selective inhibition of JAK1 and JAK2 is efficacious in rodent models of arthritis: preclinical characterization of INCB028050

Fridman JS, Scherle PA, Collins R, et al.
Journal of Immunology 2010; 184(9):5298-307

This preclinical characterisation study examined the efficacy and tolerability of the small molecule INCB028050 (now known as baricitinib), an orally bioavailable, selective Janus kinase (JAK) 1/JAK2 inhibitor, in rodent models of arthritis. The decision to investigate its effects of INCB028050 followed positive evidence for the related compound ruxolitinib, the JAK inhibitor tofacitinib and the IL-6 inhibitor tocilizumab in rheumatoid arthritis (RA). In this preclinical study, INCB028050 was sh...

Keywords: JAK, Baricitinib, Preclinical, Selectivity

A phase IIb dose-ranging study of the oral JAK inhibitor tofacitinib (CP-690,550) versus placebo in combination with background methotrexate in patients with active rheumatoid arthritis and an inadequate response to methotrexate alone

Kremer JM, Cohen S, Wilkinson BE, et al.
Arthritis & Rheumatism 2012; 64(4):970-81

This study was one of two 24-week, phase 2b studies undertaken to characterise the efficacy and safety dose-response profile of the oral Janus kinase (JAK) inhibitor tofacitinib. Six doses of tofacitinib (20 mg daily and 1, 3, 5, 10 and 15 mg twice daily) and placebo were compared as add-on therapy in adults with active RA despite methotrexate (MTX) therapy. At week 12, ACR 20 response rates were significantly higher with all tofacitinib doses than with placebo (tofacitinib 45.7–58.1%...

Keywords: JAK, Tofacitinib, Clinical, Phase 2

Open-label tofacitinib and double-blind atorvastatin in rheumatoid arthritis patients: a randomised study

McInnes IB, Ho-Youn K, Sang-Heon L, et al.
Annals of Rheumatic Diseases 2013; doi:10.1136/annrheumdis-2012-202442

This randomised, placebo-controlled, multicentre phase 2 study evaluated the efficacy and safety of atorvastatin versus placebo in modifying lipids in 111 patients with active rheumatoid arthritis (RA) receiving tofacitinib. All patients took tofacitinib 10 mg twice daily for 12 weeks, and after the first 6 weeks patients were randomised 1:1 to receive either atorvastatin 10 mg once daily (n=50) or matched placebo (n=48) in a double-blind phase for a further 6 weeks. Tofacitinib-induced elevatio...

Keywords: JAK, Tofacitinib, Clinical, Phase 2