Otezla Offers Relief to Psoriatic Arthritis Patients

November 19, 2014
Meghan Ross, Associate Editor

A long-term study of Celgene Corporation's apremilast showed that the oral selective inhibitor of phosphodiesterase 4 provides relief to adult patients with active psoriatic arthritis, as well as adult patients with moderate to severe plaque psoriasis who are candidates for phototherapy or systemic therapy.

A long-term study of Celgene Corporation’s apremilast (Otezla) showed that the oral selective inhibitor of phosphodiesterase 4 provides relief to adult patients with active psoriatic arthritis, as well as adult patients with moderate to severe plaque psoriasis who are candidates for phototherapy or systemic therapy.

Following the first year of treatment, 84% of patients who took the twice-daily 30 mg therapy continued to receive Otezla for a second year, and improvements were sustained throughout the study’s duration. At week 104, the American College of Rheumatology (ACR) 20 response rate was 65.3%. ACR50 and ACR70 response rates were 34% and 19.6%, respectively, after the second year.

In another study, nearly 84% of patients new to disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs who took Otezla for 1 year continued to receive the drug by the end of the second year. Among those who took the twice daily 30 mg monotherapy, an ACR20, ACR50, and ACR70 response was seen by 61.4%, 40.7%, and 19.2% of patients, respectively.

Patients in both studies also saw improvements in physical function and decreases in swollen and tender joints that were sustained into the second year.

"Given the chronic nature of this condition, dealing with psoriatic arthritis can be an ongoing struggle for many people," said Alvin Wells, MD, PhD, director at the Rheumatology and Immunology Center in Franklin, Wisconsin, in a press release. "Evidence-based data shows that different treatment options are frequently required to continue to manage a patient's symptoms. At our center, we see patients with active psoriatic arthritis who present with significant disease activity despite effective prior treatments. These new data from ongoing open-label studies add to our understanding of how apremilast may help meet treatment goals in such patients."