NHS building

Abbvie psoriatic arthritis drug approved for use in Scotland

pharmafile | May 11, 2021 | News story | Manufacturing and Production AbbVie, NHS, arthritis, psoriatic arthritis 

Abbvie’s RINVOQ (upadacitinib) drug, for the treatment of active psoriatic arthritis (PsA) in adults, has been approved for use in NHS Scotland by the Scottish Medicines Consortium.

The decision means that RINVOQ will be available in Scotland for eligible patients with previously treated PsA. It is the first-ever oral, once-daily selective and reversible janus kinase inhibitor approved for the treatment of PsA.

The decision comes following two Phase III clinical trials, where RINVOQ was found to meet the primary endpoint of ACR20 response at week 12 versus placebo in adult patients with PsA, who had an inadequate response to another treatment (DMARDs). 

An ACR20 response means a 20% improvement in both the tender joint count and the swollen joint count, and at least 20% improvement in three of five other core set measures.

The treatment was also shown to improve symptoms such as musculoskeletal symptoms, psoriasis, pain and fatigue.

PsA is an inflammatory disease with hallmark manifestations across multiple domains including joints and skin. In psoriatic arthritis, the immune system creates inflammation that can lead to skin lesions associated with psoriasis, pain, fatigue and stiffness in the joints.

Helen McAteer, Chief Executive of the Psoriasis Association, said: “The Psoriasis Association welcomes the news of a new treatment option being accepted for the treatment of adults with active psoriatic arthritis in NHS Scotland. 

“There remains a high unmet need for people living with this complex auto-immune condition. PsA can make every day challenging, with patients experiencing not only pain, joint stiffness and fatigue, but also significant emotional impacts such as anxiety, low mood and trouble sleeping, particularly if the PsA is poorly controlled.”

Belinda Byrne, AbbVie UK Medical Director, added,:“We are delighted with the SMC’s decision to accept upadacitinib for adults living with active psoriatic arthritis in Scotland. This approval is another important milestone in our commitment to develop a portfolio of solutions that advance standards of care for people living with rheumatic diseases.”

Jack Goddard

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