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Update on the treatment of psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis – role of apremilast

Authors Forchhammer S, Ghoreschi K

Received 24 June 2015

Accepted for publication 6 August 2015

Published 7 September 2015 Volume 2015:5 Pages 117—124

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/PTT.S69476

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewers approved by Dr Ivan Grozdev

Peer reviewer comments 4

Editor who approved publication: Professor Uwe Wollina


Stephan Forchhammer, Kamran Ghoreschi

Department of Dermatology, University Medical Center, Eberhard Karls University of Tübingen, Tübingen, Germany

Abstract: Psoriatic arthritis (PsA) is an inflammatory arthritis associated with psoriasis (PsO). The treatment of PsA can be challenging and includes non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, synthetic disease modifying antirheumatic drugs, and biologicals. One novel oral compound that has been recently established for the treatment of PsO and PsA is apremilast, a small molecule PDE4 inhibitor. The inhibition of PDE4 results in increased intracellular cAMP levels and modulates the expression of inflammatory mediators critically involved in PsO and PsA pathogenesis like TNF, IL-12, IL-17, and IL-23. Apremilast received US Food and Drug Administration approval for the treatment of PsO and PsA in 2014 and received approval from the European Medicines Agency in early 2015. This article summarizes the pharmacology of apremilast, its efficacy and safety in clinical studies, and its potential position in modern PsO/PsA management.

Keywords: apremilast, phosphodiesterase-4-inhibitor, PsO, PsA, systemic therapy, efficacy, safety

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