Eli Lilly Reveals Promising Phase 3 Results for Lebrikizumab in Patients with Skin of Color

11 March 2024 | Monday | News

More than two-thirds of people with atopic dermatitis and skin of color experienced skin improvement in a first-of-its-kind lebrikizumab study
Image Source : Public Domain

Image Source : Public Domain

Eli Lilly and Company (NYSE: LLY) announced results from a first-of-its-kind study of lebrikizumab specifically designed for people with skin of color and moderate-to-severe atopic dermatitis, commonly called eczema. In this study, treatment with lebrikizumab, an investigational medicine, showed improvement in skin clearance and itch relief. These late-breaking results from a Phase 3 study are being presented today at the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) Annual Meeting.

The lebrikizumab efficacy results from this trial are consistent with data in other Phase 3 studies, which further reinforces lebrikizumab's potential to be a first-line biologic treatment following topical prescription therapies for people across a range of skin tones with moderate-to-severe atopic dermatitis. 

"People with skin of color are disproportionately affected by atopic dermatitis, often experiencing more severe symptoms, a delay in diagnosis and a lengthier timeframe to find appropriate treatment. They also have been historically underrepresented in clinical trials, which means we have lacked data pertaining to the treatment of patients with skin of color," said Andrew Alexis, M.D., M.P.H., Professor of Clinical Dermatology and Vice Chair for Diversity and Inclusion in the Department of Dermatology at Weill Cornell Medicine, a dermatologist at New York-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center, and lead study investigator. "With these initial results, Lilly is taking a step toward investigating the needs of people with skin of color affected by atopic dermatitis."

The initial 16-week data from this study evaluated 50 patients with moderate-to-severe atopic dermatitis and darker skin tones as measured by the Fitzpatrick scale, including people who self-identify as Black or African American (80%), Asian (14%), American Indian or Alaska Native (6%). Of the 50 patients, 11 also self-identified as Hispanic/Latinx (22%) with the remaining 39 self-identifying as non-Hispanic/Latinx (78%). All patients received lebrikizumab 500-mg subcutaneously initially and at two weeks followed by 250-mg subcutaneously every two weeks to Week 16. Results at 16 weeks were consistent with the 16-week results from the ADhere and ADvocate 1 & 2 studies.

  • 68% of people experienced significant improvement of at least 75% in disease extent and severity (EASI-75)*
  • 46% of people experienced at least 90% improvement in disease extent and severity (EASI-90)
  • 39% of people achieved clear or almost clear skin (IGA 0,1) with a reduction of at least two points from baseline.
  • 56% of people experienced clinically meaningful itch relief (PNRS ≥4-point improvement)§

No new safety signals were observed and there were no serious adverse events reported. The study also included a physician assessment of changes in post-inflammatory pigmentation using the newly developed PDCA-Derm™ scale. Full efficacy and safety results from the study will be shared at future congresses.

"Lebrikizumab is the first investigative treatment for atopic dermatitis to disclose robust efficacy data specifically for people with skin of color, who may experience barriers to treatment or inequitable care," said Mark Genovese, M.D., senior vice president of Immunology Development at Lilly. "Through clinical trials like this, we hope to deliver more breakthroughs to make life better for people who have been underserved."

Lilly is committed to finding solutions to elevate care and improve treatment outcomes for all people living with dermatologic conditions, including addressing the unmet needs of people with skin of color. The company's work to advance health equity in dermatology is focused on engaging in impactful research that improves patient care, supporting health care providers with education to increase awareness of dermatologic diseases in patients with skin of color, and empowering the patient voice so patients can make their needs known and actively partner to find meaningful solutions.

Specific to clinical research, Lilly continues to engage in efforts to involve a more diverse range of participants in clinical trials and establish clear, measurable goals to drive progress.

Lilly has exclusive rights for development and commercialization of lebrikizumab in the U.S. and the rest of the world outside Europe. Lilly's partner Almirall S.A. has licensed the rights to develop and commercialize lebrikizumab for the treatment of dermatology indications, including eczema, in Europe.

*EASI=Eczema Area and Severity Index, EASI-75=75 percent reduction in EASI from baseline to Week 16
† Eczema Area and Severity Index ≥ 90 percent Reduction
‡ IGA=Investigator's Global Assessment 0 or 1 ("clear" or "almost clear")
§ PNRS=Pruritus Numeric Rating Scale in participants with a baseline PNRS of ≥ 4
¶ Fitzpatrick phototype describes the amount of melanin pigment in the skin by determining constitutional color and the effect of exposure to ultraviolet radiation and "darker skin tone" is defined as IV-VI on the scale

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