Pfizer's tasocitinib for psoriasis shows Phase II promise

Pfizer is touting results from a Phase II trial of tasocitinib (CP-690,550), an oral JAK inhibitor for moderate to severe plaque psoriasis. The drug is designed to block enzymes that play a key role in the inflammatory disease.

In the 197-person trial, tasocitinib met the primary endpoint of a statistically significant greater proportion of patients achieving at least a 75 percent reduction from baseline in PASI (Psoriasis Area and Severity Index) at week 12 in individuals with chronic moderate to severe plaque psoriasis. The most common adverse events were upper respiratory tract infection and headache, while three serious adverse events were reported during the study.

The results were presented in two posters at the annual meeting of the European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology. A late-stage study of the drug in 3,400 patients is already under way. Tasocitinib, which is also in Phase III trials for rheumatoid arthritis, is one of Pfizer's most promising pipeline drugs.

- here's Pfizer's release on the results
- read the Reuters write-up