Asthma Treated Successfully With Lebrikizumab

by Dr. Reeja Tharu on  August 22, 2011 at 12:30 PM Health Watch   - G J E 4
Asthma is a complex disease marked by the inflammation of the respiratory tract leading to breathing difficulty. The condition is heterogeneous in its clinical course and in its response to treatment.

Inhaled glucocorticoids is the standard mode of treatment for asthma. Glucocorticoids inhibit the production of Interleukin-13, a pleiotropic cytokine of type 2 helper T cells (Th2), which is thought to play a role in the onset of asthma. Nevertheless the disease remains uncontrolled in many patients.
Asthma Treated Successfully With Lebrikizumab
Asthma Treated Successfully With Lebrikizumab

It has been noticed that patients with  uncontrolled asthma continue to have increased levels of  interleukin-13 in the sputum, despite  inhaling Glucocorticoids. This is in accordance to the hypothesis that interleukin-13 can contribute to Glucocorticoids resistance. Interleukin-13 induces bronchial epithelial cells to secrete periostin a protein molecule that has a role in remodeling the airway in asthma patients.

Lebrikizumab is an IgG4 humanized monoclonal antibody that specifically targets and binds to interleukin-13 and prevents its function.

A randomized, double-blind, placebo- controlled, parallel-group, multi-center study was carried out in 219 adults who had uncontrolled asthma despite being  administered with medium-dose to high-dose inhaled glucocorticoids inhaled glucocorticoid therapy.

The patients were categorized according to baseline serum periostin level.

Lebrikizumab (at a dose of 250 mg), or a  placebo, was administered subcutaneously once a month for a total of 6 months to the patients. The placebo comprised of  sterile water and the same excipients as the lebrikizumab formulation.

The results of the study showed that Lebrikizumab treatment was linked to better lung function. Patients with greater pre-treatment levels of serum periostin had better improvement in lung function with the administration of lebrikizumab in comparison to patients with low periostin levels.

These results further support the evidence of heterogenous pathogenesis in patients with moderate-to-severe asthma.

The study also reinforces the importance of using biomarkers to analyze treatment response in patients.


"Lebrikizumab Treatment in Adults with Asthma" Jonathan Corren, M.D., et al NEJM; August 3, 2011

Source: Medindia

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