Celgene sees positive data for arthritis trial

Celgene got a boost today with the news that its mid-stage study for an experimental arthritis drug delivered positive data for improved symptoms.

Psoriatic arthritis patients taking daily doses of apremilast over 12 weeks on average responded significantly better than the patients taking a placebo. In the experimental drug group, 43.5 percent of the patients taking two 20 mg doses each day reported a 20 percent improvement in symptoms. A group of patients taking a single 40 mg dose a day generated a 35.8 percent response rate while 11.8 percent of the placebo arm measured up to the 20 percent response standard.

The 12-week ACR50 (a 50 percent improvement in symptoms) was 17.4% in the 20 mg twice daily arm, 13.4% percent in the 40 mg once daily arm, and 2.9 percent in the placebo arm. The 12-week ACR70 was 5.8 percent in the 20 mg twice daily arm, 7.5 percent in the 40 mg once daily arm, and 1.5 percent in the placebo arm.

"The positive data from this phase II study are encouraging indicators of the potential of apremilast as an innovative oral treatment that may fill a significant unmet need in this debilitating disease," said Randall M. Stevens, MD, vice president and head of immunology and inflammation clinical development for Celgene. "The activity of apremilast has now been demonstrated in studies of both psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis including a favorable safety and tolerability profile. Based on these results, we plan to actively pursue registration studies in psoriatic arthritis as a part of our larger development plan in inflammatory diseases."

- check out the Celgene release
- read the report from Forbes

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