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 News Release - December 11, 2020

CHMP Recommends the Approvals of RINVOQ(TM) (Upadacitinib) for the Treatment of Adults with Active Psoriatic Arthritis and Ankylosing Spondylitis

Across pivotal clinical trial programs, RINVOQ (15 mg, once daily) demonstrated efficacy across multiple measures of disease activity in psoriatic arthritis (PsA) and ankylosing spondylitis (AS), with a safety profile consistent with that seen in rheumatoid arthritis (RA)[1-4]

If approved, RINVOQ will be the first oral, selective and reversible JAK inhibitor approved in three rheumatologic conditions in the European Union: rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis and ankylosing spondylitis

The European Commission decisions for both indications are anticipated in early 2021


NORTH CHICAGO, Ill., Dec. 11, 2020 -- (Healthcare Sales & Marketing Network) -- AbbVie (NYSE: ABBV) today announced that the European Medicines Agency's (EMA) Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use (CHMP) recommended the approval of RINVOQ™ (upadacitinib, 15 mg), an oral, once daily selective and reversible JAK inhibitor, for the expanded use in two additional rheumatic indications: the treatment of adult patients with active psoriatic arthritis and adult patients with active ankylosing spondylitis.5 The CHMP positive opinions are based on results from three pivotal clinical studies in which RINVOQ demonstrated efficacy across multiple measures of disease activity.1-3

"The CHMP's recommendations to approve RINVOQ in both psoriatic arthritis and ankylosing spondylitis mark an important milestone. AbbVie is committed to continued research to advance treatment standards for patients living with these debilitating diseases," said Thomas Hudson, senior vice president, research and development, AbbVie. "If approved, RINVOQ will become an oral, once daily targeted treatment option across three rheumatic indications in the European Union. These recommendations pave the path towards helping more people living with psoriatic arthritis and ankylosing spondylitis find relief from their symptoms across multiple manifestations of the diseases."

In both the Phase 3 SELECT-PsA 1 and SELECT-PsA 2 clinical trials, RINVOQ met the primary endpoint of ACR20 response at week 12 versus placebo in adult patients with active psoriatic arthritis who had an inadequate response to non-biologic disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs (DMARDs) or biologic DMARDs, respectively.1,2

RINVOQ also met the primary endpoint of Assessment of Spondyloarthritis International Society (ASAS) 40 response at week 14 versus placebo in SELECT-AXIS 1, a Phase 2/3 study in patients who were naïve to biologic DMARDs and had an inadequate response or intolerance to nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs).3

Safety results from SELECT-PsA 1, SELECT-PsA 2 and SELECT-AXIS 1 have been previously reported and were consistent with those observed in rheumatoid arthritis, with no new significant safety risks identified.1-4

The CHMP positive opinion is a scientific recommendation for marketing authorization to the European Commission, which authorizes marketing approval in the European Union. The Marketing Authorization would be valid in all member states of the European Union, as well as Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway.

About Psoriatic Arthritis

Psoriatic arthritis is a heterogeneous, systemic inflammatory disease with hallmark manifestations across multiple domains including joints and skin.6,7 In psoriatic arthritis, the immune system creates inflammation that can lead to skin lesions associated with psoriasis, pain, fatigue and stiffness in the joints.6,7

About Ankylosing Spondylitis

Ankylosing spondylitis is a chronic, inflammatory musculoskeletal disease primarily affecting the spine and characterized by debilitating symptoms of pain, limited mobility, structural damage and vertebral fractures.8,9

About SELECT-PsA 11,10

SELECT-PsA 1 is a Phase 3, multicenter, randomized, double-blind, parallel-group, active and placebo-controlled study designed to evaluate the safety and efficacy of RINVOQ compared to placebo and adalimumab in adult patients with active psoriatic arthritis who have a history of inadequate response to at least one non-biologic DMARD. Patients were randomized to RINVOQ 15 mg, RINVOQ 30 mg, adalimumab 40 mg EOW or placebo at baseline. At week 24, placebo patients were switched to either RINVOQ 15 mg or RINVOQ 30 mg.

The primary endpoint was the percentage of subjects receiving RINVOQ 15 mg or RINVOQ 30 mg who achieved an ACR20 response at 12 weeks of treatment versus placebo. Key secondary endpoints included change from baseline in HAQ-DI, proportion of patients achieving ACR50 and ACR70 at week 12, proportion of patients achieving PASI 75 at week 16 and proportion of patients achieving minimal disease activity (MDA) at week 24. These are not all of the secondary endpoints. The trial is ongoing, and the long-term extension will provide data on the long-term safety, tolerability and efficacy of RINVOQ in patients who have completed the placebo-controlled period.

Top-line results from SELECT-PsA 1 were previously announced in February 2020. More information on this trial can be found at www.clinicaltrials.gov (NCT03104400).

About SELECT-PsA 22,11

SELECT-PsA 2 is a Phase 3, multicenter, randomized, double-blind, parallel-group, placebo-controlled study designed to evaluate the safety and efficacy of RINVOQ in adult patients with active psoriatic arthritis who have a history of inadequate response to at least one biologic (bDMARD). Patients were randomized to RINVOQ 15 mg, RINVOQ 30 mg or placebo followed by either RINVOQ 15 mg or RINVOQ 30 mg at week 24.

The primary endpoint was the percentage of subjects achieving an ACR20 response after 12 weeks of treatment. Key secondary endpoints included change from baseline in HAQ-DI, proportion of patients achieving ACR50 and ACR70 at week 12, proportion of patients achieving PASI 75 at week 16, as well as proportion of patients achieving MDA at week 24. These are not all of the secondary endpoints. The trial is ongoing, and the long-term extension will provide data on the long-term safety, tolerability and efficacy of RINVOQ in patients who have completed the placebo-controlled period.

Top-line results from SELECT-PsA 2 were previously announced in October 2019. More information on this trial can be found at www.clinicaltrials.gov (NCT03104374).

About SELECT-AXIS 13,12

SELECT-AXIS 1 is a Phase 2/3, multicenter, randomized, double-blind, parallel-group, placebo-controlled study designed to evaluate the safety and efficacy of RINVOQ in adult patients with active ankylosing spondylitis who are bDMARD-naïve and had inadequate response to at least two NSAIDs or intolerance to/contraindication for NSAIDs.

Key ranked secondary endpoints included proportion of subjects achieving Bath Ankylosing Spondylitis Disease Activity Index (BASDAI) 50 and ASAS partial remission (PR) at week 14, as well as change from baseline in Ankylosing Spondylitis Disease Activity Scores (ASDAS), MRI Spondyloarthritis Research Consortium of Canada (SPARCC) score (spine) and Bath Ankylosing Spondylitis Functional Index (BASFI) at week 14. Period 2 is an open-label extension period to evaluate the long-term safety, tolerability and efficacy of RINVOQ in subjects who completed Period 1.

Results from SELECT-AXIS 1 were previously announced in November 2019. More information on this trial can be found at www.clinicaltrials.gov (NCT03178487).

About RINVOQ™ (upadacitinib)

Discovered and developed by AbbVie scientists, RINVOQ is a JAK inhibitor that is being studied in several immune-mediated inflammatory diseases.10-20 In August 2019, RINVOQ received U.S. FDA approval for adult patients with moderately to severely active rheumatoid arthritis who have had an inadequate response or intolerance to methotrexate. In December 2019, RINVOQ was approved by the European Commission for the treatment of adult patients with moderate to severe active rheumatoid arthritis who have responded inadequately to, or who are intolerant to one or more disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs. The approved dose for RINVOQ in rheumatoid arthritis is 15 mg. Phase 3 trials of RINVOQ in rheumatoid arthritis, atopic dermatitis, psoriatic arthritis, axial spondyloarthritis, Crohn's disease, ulcerative colitis, giant cell arteritis and Takayasu arteritis are ongoing.10-12,14-20

Important Safety Information about RINVOQ™ (upadacitinib)5

RINVOQ is contraindicated in patients hypersensitive to the active substance or to any of the excipients, in patients with active tuberculosis (TB) or active serious infections, in patients with severe hepatic impairment, and during pregnancy.

Use in combination with other potent immunosuppressants is not recommended.

Serious and sometimes fatal infections have been reported in patients receiving upadacitinib. The most frequent serious infections reported included pneumonia and cellulitis. Cases of bacterial meningitis have been reported. Among opportunistic infections, TB, multidermatomal herpes zoster, oral/oesophageal candidiasis, and cryptococcosis have been reported with upadacitinib. Prior to initiating upadacitinib, consider the risks and benefits of treatment in patients with chronic or recurrent infection or with a history of a serious or opportunistic infection, in patients who have been exposed to TB or have resided or travelled in areas of endemic TB or endemic mycoses, and in patients with underlying conditions that may predispose them to infection. Upadacitinib therapy should be interrupted if a patient develops a serious or opportunistic infection. As there is a higher incidence of infections in patients ≥75 years of age, caution should be used when treating this population.

Patients should be screened for TB before starting upadacitinib therapy. Anti-TB therapy should be considered prior to initiation of upadacitinib in patients with previously untreated latent TB or in patients with risk factors for TB infection.

Viral reactivation, including cases of herpes zoster, were reported in clinical studies. Consider interruption of therapy if a patient develops herpes zoster until the episode resolves. Screening for viral hepatitis and monitoring for reactivation should be performed before starting and during therapy with upadacitinib.

The use of live, attenuated vaccines during, or immediately prior to therapy is not recommended. It is recommended that patients be brought up to date with all immunizations, including prophylactic zoster vaccinations, prior to initiating upadacitinib, in agreement with current immunization guidelines.

The risk of malignancies, including lymphoma is increased in patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Immunomodulatory medicinal products may increase the risk of malignancies, including lymphoma. The clinical data are currently limited and long-term studies are ongoing. Malignancies, including non-melanoma skin cancer (NMSC), have been reported in patients treated with upadacitinib. Consider the risks and benefits of upadacitinib treatment prior to initiating therapy in patients with a known malignancy other than a successfully treated NMSC or when considering continuing upadacitinib therapy in patients who develop a malignancy. Periodic skin examination is recommended for patients who are at increased risk for skin cancer.

Absolute neutrophil count <1000 cells/mm3, absolute lymphocyte count <500 cells/mm3, or haemoglobin levels <8 g/dL were reported in <1% of patients in clinical trials. Treatment should not be initiated, or should be temporarily interrupted, in patients with these haematological abnormalities observed during routine patient management.

RA patients have an increased risk for cardiovascular disorders. Patients treated with upadacitinib should have risk factors (e.g., hypertension, hyperlipidaemia) managed as part of usual standard of care.

Upadacitinib treatment was associated with increases in lipid parameters, including total cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol, and high-density lipoprotein cholesterol. The effect of these lipid parameter elevations on cardiovascular morbidity and mortality has not been determined.

Treatment with upadacitinib was associated with an increased incidence of liver enzyme elevation compared to placebo. If increases in ALT or AST are observed during routine patient management and drug-induced liver injury is suspected, upadacitinib therapy should be interrupted until this diagnosis is excluded.

Events of deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and pulmonary embolism (PE) have been reported in patients receiving JAK inhibitors, including upadacitinib. Upadacitinib should be used with caution in patients at high risk for DVT/PE. Risk factors that should be considered in determining the patient's risk for DVT/PE include older age, obesity, a medical history of DVT/PE, patients undergoing major surgery, and prolonged immobilisation. If clinical features of DVT/PE occur, upadacitinib treatment should be discontinued and patients should be evaluated promptly, followed by appropriate treatment.

The most commonly reported adverse drug reactions are upper respiratory tract infections (13.5%), nausea (3.5%), increased blood creatine phosphokinase (2.5%), and cough (2.2%). The most common serious adverse reactions were serious infections.

Please see the full SmPC for complete prescribing information at www.EMA.europa.eu.

Globally, prescribing information varies; refer to the individual country product label for complete information.

About AbbVie in Rheumatology

For more than 20 years, AbbVie has been dedicated to improving care for people living with rheumatic diseases. Our longstanding commitment to discovering and delivering transformative therapies is underscored by our pursuit of cutting-edge science that improves our understanding of promising new pathways and targets in order to help more people living with rheumatic diseases reach their treatment goals. For more information on AbbVie in rheumatology, visit https://www.abbvie.com/our-science/therapeutic-focus-areas/immunology/immunology-focus-areas/rheumatology.html.

About AbbVie

AbbVie's mission is to discover and deliver innovative medicines that solve serious health issues today and address the medical challenges of tomorrow. We strive to have a remarkable impact on people's lives across several key therapeutic areas: immunology, oncology, neuroscience, eye care, virology, women's health and gastroenterology, in addition to products and services across its Allergan Aesthetics portfolio. For more information about AbbVie, please visit us at www.abbvie.com. Follow @abbvie on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube and LinkedIn.

Forward-Looking Statements

Some statements in this news release are, or may be considered, forward-looking statements for purposes of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. The words "believe," "expect," "anticipate," "project" and similar expressions, among others, generally identify forward-looking statements. AbbVie cautions that these forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties, including the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on AbbVie's operations, results and financial results, that may cause actual results to differ materially from those indicated in the forward-looking statements. Such risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, failure to realize the expected benefits of the Allergan acquisition, failure to promptly and effectively integrate Allergan's businesses, significant transaction costs and/or unknown or inestimable liabilities, potential litigation associated with the Allergan acquisition, challenges to intellectual property, competition from other products, difficulties inherent in the research and development process, adverse litigation or government action, and changes to laws and regulations applicable to our industry. Additional information about the economic, competitive, governmental, technological and other factors that may affect AbbVie's operations is set forth in Item 1A, "Risk Factors," of AbbVie's 2019 Annual Report on Form 10-K, which has been filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). AbbVie undertakes no obligation to release publicly any revisions to forward-looking statements as a result of subsequent events or developments, except as required by law.

References:
  1. McInnes I, et al. Efficacy and Safety of Upadacitinib Versus Placebo and Adalimumab in Patients With Active Psoriatic Arthritis and Inadequate Response to Non-Biologic Disease-Modifying Anti-Rheumatic Drugs (SELECT-PsA-1): a Double-Blind, Randomized Controlled Phase 3 Trial. 2020 EULAR E-Congress; LB0001.
  2. Mease PJ, et al. Upadacitinib for psoriatic arthritis refractory to biologics: SELECT-PsA 2. Ann Rheum Dis. 2020 Dec 3;annrheumdis-2020-218870. doi: 10.1136/annrheumdis-2020-218870
  3. Van der Heijde D, et al. Efficacy and Safety of Upadacitinib in a Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled, Multicenter Phase 2/3 Clinical Study of Patients With Active Ankylosing Spondylitis. 2019 ACR/ARP Annual Meeting; 2728.
  4. Cohen S., et al. Safety profile of upadacitinib in Rheumatoid Arthritis: Integrated analysis from the SELECT Phase 3 Clinical Program. EULAR 2019; THU0167.
  5. RINVOQ [Summary of Product Characteristics]. AbbVie Deutschland GmbH & Co. KG; March 2020. Available at: https://www.ema.europa.eu/en/documents/product-information/rinvoq-epar-product-information_en.pdf
  6. Duarte GV, et al. Psoriatic arthritis. Best Pract Res Clin Rheumatol. 2012 Feb;26(1):147-56. doi: 10.1016/j.berh.2012.01.003.
  7. Diseases & Conditions: Psoriatic Arthritis. 2019. American College of Rheumatology. Available at: https://www.rheumatology.org/I-Am-A/Patient-Caregiver/Diseases-Conditions/Psoriatic-Arthritis. Accessed on November 30, 2020.
  8. Mayo Clinic. Ankylosing Spondylitis. 2019. Available at: www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/ankylosing-spondylitis/symptoms-causes/syc-20354808. Accessed on November 30, 2020.
  9. Dean, LE, et al. Global prevalence of ankylosing spondylitis. Rheumatology (Oxford). 2014 Apr;53(4):650-7. doi: 10.1093/rheumatology/ket387. Epub 2013 Dec 9.
  10. A Study Comparing Upadacitinib (ABT-494) to Placebo and to Adalimumab in Participants With Psoriatic Arthritis Who Have an Inadequate Response to at Least One Non-Biologic Disease Modifying Anti-Rheumatic Drug (SELECT - PsA 1). ClinicalTrials.gov. 2020. Available at: https://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT03104400. Accessed on November 30, 2020.
  11. A Study Comparing Upadacitinib (ABT-494) to Placebo in Participants With Active Psoriatic Arthritis Who Have a History of Inadequate Response to at Least One Biologic Disease Modifying Anti-Rheumatic Drug (SELECT-PsA 2). Clinicaltrials.gov. 2020. Available at: https://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT03104374. Accessed on November 30, 2020.
  12. A Study Evaluating the Safety and Efficacy of Upadacitinib in Subjects With Active Ankylosing Spondylitis (SELECT Axis 1). ClinicalTrials.gov. 2020. Available at: https://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/study/NCT03178487. Accessed on November 30, 2020.
  13. Pipeline – Our Science | AbbVie. AbbVie. 2019. Available at: https://www.abbvie.com/our-science/pipeline.html. Accessed on November 30, 2020.
  14. Burmester GR, et al. Safety and efficacy of upadacitinib in patients with rheumatoid arthritis and inadequate response to conventional synthetic disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs (SELECT-NEXT): a randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled phase 3 trial. Lancet. 2018 Jun 23;391(10139):2503-2512. doi: 10.1016/S0140-6736(18)31115-2. Epub 2018 Jun 18.
  15. A Multicenter, Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Study of ABT-494 for the Induction of Symptomatic and Endoscopic Remission in Subjects With Moderately to Severely Active Crohn's Disease Who Have Inadequately Responded to or Are Intolerant to Immunomodulators or Anti-TNF Therapy. ClinicalTrials.gov. 2020. Available at: https://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT02365649. Accessed on November 30, 2020.
  16. A Study to Evaluate the Safety and Efficacy of ABT-494 for Induction and Maintenance Therapy in Subjects With Moderately to Severely Active Ulcerative Colitis. ClinicalTrials.gov. 2020. Available at: https://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT02819635. Accessed on November 30, 2020.
  17. A Study to Compare Safety and Efficacy of Upadacitinib to Dupilumab in Adult Participants With Moderate to Severe Atopic Dermatitis (Heads Up). ClinicalTrials.gov. 2020. Available at: https://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT03738397. Accessed on November 30, 2020.
  18. A Study to Evaluate Efficacy and Safety of Upadacitinib in Adult Participants With Axial Spondyloarthritis (SELECT AXIS 2). ClinicalTrials.gov. 2020. Available at: https://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT04169373. Accessed on November 30, 2020.
  19. A Study to Evaluate the Safety and Efficacy of Upadacitinib in Participants With Giant Cell Arteritis (SELECT-GCA). ClinicalTrials.gov. 2020. Available at: https://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT03725202. Accessed on November 30, 2020.
  20. A Study to Evaluate the Efficacy and Safety of Upadacitinib in Subjects With Takayasu Arteritis (SELECT-TAK). ClinicalTrials.gov. 2020. Available at https://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/record/NCT04161898. Accessed on November 30, 2020.


Source: AbbVie

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