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Targeting p19 as a treatment option for psoriasis: an evidence-based review of guselkumab

Authors Wechter T, Cline A, Feldman SR

Received 14 June 2018

Accepted for publication 5 August 2018

Published 22 August 2018 Volume 2018:14 Pages 1489—1497


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Professor Garry Walsh

Todd Wechter,1 Abigail Cline,2 Steven R Feldman2–4

1Stony Brook Medicine, Stony Brook, NY, USA; 2Center for Dermatology Research, Department of Dermatology, Wake Forest School of Medicine, Winston-Salem, NC, USA; 3Department of Pathology, Wake Forest School of Medicine, Winston-Salem, NC, USA; 4Department of Public Health Sciences, Wake Forest School of Medicine, Winston-Salem, NC, USA

Abstract: Further understanding of psoriasis pathogenesis has led to the development of effective biologic medications. Guselkumab (GUS) is a subcutaneously administered monoclonal antibody that targets the p19 cytokine subunit in IL-23 and IL-39 and is US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved for the treatment of moderate-to-severe psoriasis in adult patients. This review evaluates the pharmacology, safety and efficacy of GUS in patients with psoriasis. We performed a literature review by searching online databases including PubMed and Google Scholar. In clinical trials, GUS improved diseases including psoriatic arthritis (PsA) and specific areas of disease (scalp, feet, hands and fingernails). In the Phase III trials VOYAGE 1 and 2, more GUS than adalimumab (ADM) patients experienced a ≥90% reduction in Psoriasis Area and Severity Index (PASI) score (PASI90) (VOYAGE 1: 80.2% vs 53.0%; VOYAGE 2: 75.2% vs 54.8%; P<0.001 for both) and Investigator Global Assessment score of 0 or 1 (VOYAGE 1: 84.2% vs 61.7%; VOAYGE 2: 83.5% vs 64.9%; P<0.001 for both) at Week 24. GUS was also successful in treating patients unresponsive to ADM and ustekinumab in the VOYAGE 2 and NAVIGATE trials, respectively. While long-term data are necessary, GUS appears to have a favorable side effect profile with most common adverse effects including nasopharyngitis and upper respiratory tract infections. GUS is a well-tolerated and effective medication for patients with psoriasis. Continued study of GUS and the p19 subunit will help to determine GUS’s ultimate place in therapy.

biologics, IL-23, IL-39, monoclonal antibody

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