Itepekimab is the best placebo for moderate to severe asthma – Consumer Health News

THURSDAY, October 28, 2021 (HealthDay News) – For adults with moderate to severe asthma, itepekimab monotherapy is associated with reduced events indicating loss of asthma control, according to a study published in the issue of October 28 from the New England Journal of Medicine.

Michael E. Wechsler, MD, of National Jewish Health in Denver, and colleagues conducted a Phase 2 trial involving adults with moderate to severe asthma receiving inhaled glucocorticoids and long-acting beta-agonists. A total of 296 participants were randomized in a 1: 1: 1: 1 ratio to receive subcutaneous itepekimab, itepekimab plus dupilumab, dupilumab, or placebo every two weeks for 12 weeks.

The researchers found that an event indicating loss of asthma control occurred in 22, 27, 19 and 41% of people in the itepekimab, itepekimab plus dupilumab, dupilumab and placebo groups, respectively, at 12 weeks; the corresponding odds ratios were 0.42 (95% confidence interval, 0.20 to 0.88; P = 0.02), 0.52 (95% confidence interval, 0.26 to 1, 06; P = 0.07) and 0.33 (95% confidence interval, 0.15 to 0.70) for itepekimab, itepekimab plus dupilumab and dupilumab compared to placebo. The forced expiratory volume in one second before bronchodilator use increased with itepekimab and dupilumab monotherapies compared to placebo, but not with itepekimab plus dupilumab. Compared with placebo, treatment with itepekimab improved asthma control and quality of life and resulted in a greater reduction in the average number of eosinophils in the blood.

“Itepekimab and dupilumab monotherapies resulted in a lower incidence of events indicating loss of asthma control and improvement in lung function,” write the authors of an accompanying editorial. “However, the combination of itepekimab and dupilumab was not superior to any of the treatments alone.”

Several authors have disclosed financial ties to Sanofi and Regeneron, which manufacture itepekimab and funded the study.

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