The European Medicines Agency’s Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use (CHMP) has adopted a positive opinion for Dupixent® (dupilumab) in a third indication. The CHMP recommended Dupixent be approved as an add-on therapy with intranasal corticosteroids for the treatment of adults with severe chronic rhinosinusitis with nasal polyposis (CRSwNP) for whom therapy with systemic corticosteroids and/or surgery do not provide adequate disease control. If approved, Dupixent would be the first biologic medicine available in the European Union (EU) to treat these patients.
The positive CHMP opinion is based on two pivotal Phase 3 trials (the 24-week SINUS-24 and 52-week SINUS-52) that evaluated Dupixent 300 mg every two weeks plus standard-of-care intranasal corticosteroids compared to placebo plus intranasal corticosteroids. A final decision on the Dupixent application by the European Commission (EC) is expected in the coming months.
Dupixent is a fully-human monoclonal antibody that inhibits the signaling of the interleukin-4 (IL-4) and interleukin-13 (IL-13) proteins. Data from Dupixent clinical trials have shown that IL-4 and IL-13 are key drivers of the type 2 inflammation that plays a major role in CRSwNP, asthma and atopic dermatitis.
CRSwNP is a chronic disease of the upper airway that obstructs the sinuses and nasal passages. It can lead to persistent breathing difficulties, nasal congestion and discharge, reduced or loss of sense of smell and taste, and facial pressure or pain. For patients with severe CRSwNP, the current standard-of-care includes intermittent courses of systemic corticosteroids or sinonasal surgery, both of which are associated with disease recurrence. Many patients with CRSwNP have other type 2 inflammatory diseases like asthma, and these patients often have more severe asthma and are often more difficult to treat. Patients with CRSwNP and co-morbid asthma may have an increased risk of asthma attacks, high symptom burden and a substantial adverse impact on health-related quality of life. In the Dupixent CRSwNP trials, 59% of patients also had asthma.
Dupixent is currently approved in the EU for patients 12 years and older as an add-on maintenance treatment for severe asthma with type 2 inflammation characterized by raised blood eosinophils and/or raised fractional exhaled nitric oxide (FeNO), who are inadequately controlled with high dose inhaled corticosteroid (ICS) plus another medicinal product for maintenance treatment. It is also approved in the EU for use in patients 12 years and older with moderate-to-severe atopic dermatitis who are candidates for systemic therapy.
Outside of the EU, Dupixent is approved for use in specific patients with moderate-to-severe atopic dermatitis and certain patients with asthma in a number of other countries around the world, including the U.S. and Japan. Dupixent is also approved in the U.S. for use with other medicines to treat CRSwNP in adults whose disease is not controlled.
Dupilumab Development Program
In addition to the currently approved indications, Sanofi and Regeneron are also studying dupilumab in a broad range of clinical development programs for diseases driven by allergic and other type 2 inflammation, including pediatric asthma (6 to 11 years of age, Phase 3), pediatric atopic dermatitis (6 months to 5 years of age, Phase 2/3 and 6 to 11 years of age, Phase 3), eosinophilic esophagitis (Phase 2/3), chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (Phase 3) and food and environmental allergies (Phase 2). Dupilumab is also being studied in combination with REGN3500 (SAR440340), which targets IL-33. These potential uses are investigational and the safety and efficacy have not been evaluated by any regulatory authority.
Dupilumab is being jointly developed by Sanofi and Regeneron under a global collaboration agreement.
DUPIXENT is a prescription medicine used:
- to treat people 12 years of age and older with moderate-to-severe atopic dermatitis (eczema) that is not well controlled with prescription therapies used on the skin (topical), or who cannot use topical therapies. DUPIXENT can be used with or without topical corticosteroids. It is not known if DUPIXENT is safe and effective in children with atopic dermatitis under 12 years of age.
- with other asthma medicines for the maintenance treatment of moderate-to-severe asthma in people aged 12 years and older whose asthma is not controlled with their current asthma medicines. DUPIXENT helps prevent severe asthma attacks (exacerbations) and can improve your breathing. DUPIXENT may also help reduce the amount of oral corticosteroids you need while preventing severe asthma attacks and improving your breathing. DUPIXENT is not used to treat sudden breathing problems. It is not known if DUPIXENT is safe and effective in children with asthma under 12 years of age.
- with other medicines to treat chronic rhinosinusitis with nasal polyposis in adults whose disease is not controlled. It is not known if DUPIXENT is safe and effective in children with chronic rhinosinusitis with nasal polyposis under 18 years of age.
IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION FOR U.S. PATIENTS
Do not use if you are allergic to dupilumab or to any of the ingredients in DUPIXENT®.
Before using DUPIXENT, tell your healthcare provider about all your medical conditions, including if you:
- have eye problems
- have a parasitic (helminth) infection
- are taking oral, topical, or inhaled corticosteroid medicines. Do not stop taking your corticosteroid medicines unless instructed by your healthcare provider. This may cause other symptoms that were controlled by the corticosteroid medicine to come back.
- are scheduled to receive any vaccinations. You should not receive a “live vaccine” if you are treated with DUPIXENT.
- are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. It is not known whether DUPIXENT will harm your unborn baby.
- are breastfeeding or plan to breastfeed. It is not known whether DUPIXENT passes into your breast milk.
Tell your healthcare provider about all the medicines you take, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins and herbal supplements. If you are taking asthma medicines, do not change or stop your asthma medicine without talking to your healthcare provider.
DUPIXENT can cause serious side effects, including:
- Allergic reactions (hypersensitivity), including a severe reaction known as anaphylaxis. Stop using DUPIXENT and tell your healthcare provider or get emergency help right away if you get any of the following symptoms: breathing problems, fever, general ill feeling, swollen lymph nodes, swelling of the face, mouth and tongue, hives, itching, fainting, dizziness, feeling lightheaded (low blood pressure), joint pain, or skin rash.
- Eye problems. Tell your healthcare provider if you have any new or worsening eye problems, including eye pain or changes in vision.
- Inflammation of your blood vessels. Rarely, this can happen in people with asthma who receive DUPIXENT. This may happen in people who also take a steroid medicine by mouth that is being stopped or the dose is being lowered. It is not known whether this is caused by DUPIXENT. Tell your healthcare provider right away if you have: rash, shortness of breath, persistent fever, chest pain, or a feeling of pins and needles or numbness of your arms or legs.
The most common side effects include:
- Atopic dermatitis: injection site reactions, eye and eyelid inflammation, including redness, swelling, and itching, and cold sores in your mouth or on your lips.
- Asthma: injection site reactions, pain in the throat (oropharyngeal pain), and high count of a certain white blood cell (eosinophilia).
- Chronic rhinosinusitis with nasal polyposis: injection site reactions, eye and eyelid inflammation, including redness, swelling, and itching, high count of a certain white blood cell (eosinophilia), trouble sleeping (insomnia), toothache, gastritis, and joint pain (arthralgia).
Tell your healthcare provider if you have any side effect that bothers you or that does not go away. These are not all the possible side effects of DUPIXENT. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit www.fda.gov/medwatch, or call 1-800-FDA-1088.
Use DUPIXENT exactly as prescribed. DUPIXENT is an injection given under the skin (subcutaneous injection). If your healthcare provider decides that you or a caregiver can give DUPIXENT injections, you or your caregiver should receive training on the right way to prepare and inject DUPIXENT. Do not try to inject DUPIXENT until you have been shown the right way by your healthcare provider. In children 12 years of age and older, it is recommended that DUPIXENT be administered by or under supervision of an adult.