COMPARATIVE STUDY
JOURNAL ARTICLE
MULTICENTER STUDY
RANDOMIZED CONTROLLED TRIAL

Oral glucocorticoid-sparing effect of mepolizumab in eosinophilic asthma

Elisabeth H Bel, Sally E Wenzel, Philip J Thompson, Charlene M Prazma, Oliver N Keene, Steven W Yancey, Hector G Ortega, Ian D Pavord
New England Journal of Medicine 2014 September 25, 371 (13): 1189-97
25199060

BACKGROUND: Many patients with severe asthma require regular treatment with oral glucocorticoids despite the use of high-dose inhaled therapy. However, the regular use of systemic glucocorticoids can result in serious and often irreversible adverse effects. Mepolizumab, a humanized monoclonal antibody that binds to and inactivates interleukin-5, has been shown to reduce asthma exacerbations in patients with severe eosinophilic asthma.

METHODS: In a randomized, double-blind trial involving 135 patients with severe eosinophilic asthma, we compared the glucocorticoid-sparing effect of mepolizumab (at a dose of 100 mg) with that of placebo administered subcutaneously every 4 weeks for 20 weeks. The primary outcome was the degree of reduction in the glucocorticoid dose (90 to 100% reduction, 75 to less than 90% reduction, 50 to less than 75% reduction, more than 0 to less than 50% reduction, or no decrease in oral glucocorticoid dose, a lack of asthma control during weeks 20 to 24, or withdrawal from treatment). Other outcomes included the rate of asthma exacerbations, asthma control, and safety.

RESULTS: The likelihood of a reduction in the glucocorticoid-dose stratum was 2.39 times greater in the mepolizumab group than in the placebo group (95% confidence interval, 1.25 to 4.56; P=0.008). The median percentage reduction from baseline in the glucocorticoid dose was 50% in the mepolizumab group, as compared with no reduction in the placebo group (P=0.007). Despite receiving a reduced glucocorticoid dose, patients in the mepolizumab group, as compared with those in the placebo group, had a relative reduction of 32% in the annualized rate of exacerbations (1.44 vs. 2.12, P=0.04) and a reduction of 0.52 points with respect to asthma symptoms (P=0.004), as measured on the Asthma Control Questionnaire 5 (in which the minimal clinically important difference is 0.5 points). The safety profile of mepolizumab was similar to that of placebo.

CONCLUSIONS: In patients requiring daily oral glucocorticoid therapy to maintain asthma control, mepolizumab had a significant glucocorticoid-sparing effect, reduced exacerbations, and improved control of asthma symptoms. (Funded by GlaxoSmithKline; SIRIUS ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT01691508.).

Full Text Links

Find Full Text Links for this Article

Discussion

You are not logged in. Sign Up or Log In to join the discussion.

Related Papers

Remove bar
Read by QxMD icon Read
25199060
×

Search Tips

Use Boolean operators: AND/OR

diabetic AND foot
diabetes OR diabetic

Exclude a word using the 'minus' sign

Virchow -triad

Use Parentheses

water AND (cup OR glass)

Add an asterisk (*) at end of a word to include word stems

Neuro* will search for Neurology, Neuroscientist, Neurological, and so on

Use quotes to search for an exact phrase

"primary prevention of cancer"
(heart or cardiac or cardio*) AND arrest -"American Heart Association"