Efficacy of house dust mite sublingual immunotherapy tablet in North American adolescents and adults in a randomized, placebo-controlled trial

Hendrik Nolte, David I Bernstein, Harold S Nelson, Jörg Kleine-Tebbe, Gordon L Sussman, Dorthe Seitzberg, Dorte Rehm, Amarjot Kaur, Ziliang Li, Susan Lu
Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology 2016, 138 (6): 1631-1638

BACKGROUND: The house dust mite (HDM) sublingual immunotherapy (SLIT) tablet (MK-8237; Merck & Co, Kenilworth, NJ/ALK-Abelló, Hørsholm, Denmark) has demonstrated beneficial effects on allergic rhinoconjunctivitis and asthma outcomes in European trials.

OBJECTIVE: This is the first trial to assess the efficacy/safety of HDM SLIT-tablets in North American subjects with HDM-induced allergic rhinitis with or without conjunctivitis (AR/C).

METHODS: In this double-blind, multicenter trial (NCT01700192) 1482 subjects (aged ≥12 years) with HDM-induced AR/C with or without asthma were randomized to a daily SQ HDM SLIT-tablet (12 SQ-HDM dose) or placebo for up to approximately 52 weeks. A rhinitis daily symptom score (DSS; 4 nasal symptoms, maximum score = 12) of 6 or greater, or 5 or greater with 1 symptom being severe, on 5 of 7 consecutive days before randomization was required. The primary end point was the average total combined rhinitis score, which was defined as the rhinitis DSS plus rhinitis daily medication score (DMS), during the last 8 treatment weeks.

RESULTS: Treatment with 12 SQ-HDM improved the total combined rhinitis score by 17% (95% CI, 10% to 25%) versus placebo. Improvements versus placebo in the secondary end points of average rhinitis DSS, rhinitis DMS, total combined rhinoconjunctivitis score, and visual analog scale-assessed AR/C symptoms were 16%, 18%, 17%, and 16%, respectively. All nominal P values were less than .001 versus placebo, except rhinitis DMS (P = 0.15). No treatment-related adverse events meeting the International Council on Harmonization definition of a serious adverse event were reported; 1 nonserious treatment-related systemic allergic reaction occurred (assessed as moderate intensity) at first administration under medical supervision and was treated with epinephrine.

CONCLUSIONS: In the first North American trial of use of a SLIT-tablet for HDM allergy, 12 SQ-HDM was well tolerated and improved HDM-induced rhinitis symptoms in adults and adolescents.


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