Leicester academic leads study into chronic obstructive pulmonary disease

Posted by ap507 at Sep 09, 2014 12:45 PM |
Professor Christopher Brightling involved in study to evaluate safety of benralizumab drug in patients with COPD

Professor Christopher Brightling (pictured), Wellcome Senior Research Fellow in the Department of Infection, Immunity and Inflammation and Clinical Professor in Respiratory Medicine at Glenfield Hospital, has worked with AstraZeneca on a study to evaluate its novel investigational monoclonal antibody benralizumab in patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).

The study evaluated the safety and efficacy of benralizumab in 101 adults with moderate-to-severe COPD and experiencing at least one acute exacerbation requiring oral corticosteroids, antibiotics, or hospitalisation in the past year. Benralizumab demonstrated clinically significant improvements in lung function in the overall population.

In the pre-specified analyses, the study indicated that benralizumab reduced COPD exacerbations and improved other symptoms of COPD in certain patient groups. Patients treated with benralizumab who had higher baseline levels of eosinophils in their blood showed greater improvements in COPD symptoms, including exacerbation rate, lung function and disease-specific health status as measured by the Saint George’s Respiratory Questionnaire-COPD (SGRQ-C) versus placebo-treated subjects.

“Benralizumab is the first biological agent to show marked reduction in eosinophilic inflammation and beneficial effects in COPD, indicating a potential new way to treat patients with severe COPD symptoms,” said Professor Brightling. “The strength of these results reinforces the further development of this molecule for COPD.”

Detailed results and safety data from the trial were published in The Lancet Respiratory Medicine and can be viewed here. These are believed to be the first clinical data published on a potential biologics treatment for eosinophilic COPD.

AstraZeneca announced the start of the Phase III programme for benralizumab in COPD at the company’s second quarter and half year results on 31 July 2014.