As reported by MedPage Today, Phase IIb clinical trial data presented by Dr. Rich Furie at EULAR showed significant positive benefit for the monoclonal antibody anifrolumab, which blocks the type 1 interferon receptor.
Two phase III studies are underway, using 300 mg as the highest dose. "So this was very uplifting for the lupus community," Furie said during his presentation. "This was after a year where we heard negative results about tabalumab and the epratuzumab program failed, so hopefully in 5 years we will have this drug in our armamentarium."
A cautionary note was offered by H. Michael Belmont, MD, of the Hospital for Joint Diseases at NYU Langone Medical Center in New York City, who was not involved in the study.
"There was no dose-response curve, in that the outcomes were superior in the lower dose, 300 mg, versus higher dose, 1,000 mg, patients. A phase III study can clarify the meaning of this result," he said.
The study was funded by MedImmune, and Dr. Furie disclosed relevant relationship to MedImmune.