COMPARATIVE STUDY
JOURNAL ARTICLE
MULTICENTER STUDY
RANDOMIZED CONTROLLED TRIAL

Efficacy and safety of asenapine in a placebo- and haloperidol-controlled trial in patients with acute exacerbation of schizophrenia

John M Kane, Michael Cohen, Jun Zhao, Larry Alphs, John Panagides
Journal of Clinical Psychopharmacology 2010, 30 (2): 106-15
20520283
Asenapine is approved by the Food and Drugs Administration in adults for acute treatment of schizophrenia or of manic or mixed episodes associated with bipolar I disorder with or without psychotic features. In a double-blind 6-week trial, 458 patients with acute schizophrenia were randomly assigned to fixed-dose treatment with asenapine at 5 mg twice daily (BID), asenapine at 10 mg BID, placebo, or haloperidol at 4 mg BID (to verify assay sensitivity). With last observations carried forward (LOCF), mean Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale total score reductions from baseline to endpoint were significantly greater with asenapine at 5 mg BID (-16.2) and haloperidol (-15.4) than placebo (-10.7; both P < 0.05); using mixed model for repeated measures (MMRM), changes at day 42 were significantly greater with asenapine at 5 and 10 mg BID (-21.3 and -19.4, respectively) and haloperidol (-20.0) than placebo (-14.6; all P < 0.05). On the Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale positive subscale, all treatments were superior to placebo with LOCF and MMRM; asenapine at 5 mg BID was superior to placebo on the negative subscale with MMRM and on the general psychopathology subscale with LOCF and MMRM. Treatment-related adverse events (AEs) occurred in 44% and 52%, 57%, and 41% of the asenapine at 5 and 10 mg BID, haloperidol, and placebo groups, respectively. Extrapyramidal symptoms reported as AEs occurred in 15% and 18%, 34%, and 10% of the asenapine at 5 and 10 mg BID, haloperidol, and placebo groups, respectively. Across all groups, no more than 5% of patients had clinically significant weight change. Post hoc analyses indicated that efficacy was similar with asenapine and haloperidol; greater contrasts were seen in AEs, especially extrapyramidal symptoms.

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