Study: Apremilast Efficacy Shows Efficacy in Psoriasis


Results from a recent analysis suggest promise for apremilast, which showed efficacy in the treatment of patients with moderate-to-severe psoriasis. 

Authors publishing in Acta Dermato-Venereologica focused on the impact on skin lesions, pruritus, and serum cytokine levels. The researchers accomplished this through the use of a microfluidic ELISA system for the measurement of serum cytokines with high sensitivity. Patients were given apremilast to patients and evaluated over 24 weeks.

Significant improvements in skin lesions and itching were noted as early as 4 weeks into treatment, and patients continued to see steady progress thereafter. The authors reported reductions in inflammatory cytokines as well as increased suppressive cytokine levels. These changes were observed consistently over the study duration.

The researchers evaluated serum cytokine levels and disease severity using Psoriasis Area and Severity Index (PASI) score. They reported positive correlations between certain cytokines and PASI scores at various time points, suggesting a potential association between cytokine levels and disease severity. The researchers also examined the relationship between serum cytokines and pruritus severity and reported correlations between some cytokines and pruritus visual analogue scale (VAS) scores. Apremilast was reported to reduce cytokines associated with itch in this group, indicating a potential anti-pruritic mechanism.

The study's findings align with previous research indicating apremilast's ability to modulate the immune system by balancing cytokine levels. While the study had limitations, including a small sample size and homogeneity of the patient population, it underscores the need for further research in diverse populations. Additionally, the collaboration between medical and engineering fields in developing advanced measurement techniques holds promise for future research and clinical applications in psoriasis management.

"This study is the first to track serum cytokine concentrations over time in psoriasis patients be-fore and after apremilast treatment," the authors wrote in their conclusion. "The study revealed that apremilast reduced the concentrations of several serum inflammatory cytokines and increased levels of inhibitory cytokines."

The authors acknowledge the limited applicability of study results as well.

"The limitation of this study is the small number of patients, all of whom were Japanese," they wrote. "Future studies are expected to be conducted in various ethnic groups and on a larger scale. We also hope that through this research, collaboration between medical and engineering fields will advance not only in Japan but also worldwide."

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