This site is intended for health professionals only

High hopes for lupus drug trial


Scientists are anticipating a breakthrough in the treatment of patients with a chronic inflammatory disease ahead of a final phase III trial of the drug belimumab.

BLISS-76 is the second of two pivotal phase III randomised clinical trials of LymphoStat-B (belimumab) in patients with active systemic lupus erythematosus (lupus).

The drug is being developed by Human Genome Sciences (HGS) and GlaxoSmithKline under a joint development and commercialisation project agreed in August 2006.

“If LymphoStat-B is successful in phase III, we believe that it could represent a breakthrough in the treatment of patients suffering from lupus,” said H Thomas Watkins, president and chief executive of HGS.

“We are on track to have data from our first phase III trial by mid-2009, and data from our second phase III trial by autumn 2009. Assuming positive results, we anticipate a BLA (Biologic Licence Application) filing in the United States in the first half of 2010.”

BLISS-76 began in February last year and has enrolled 826 patients in 19 countries, mainly in North America and Europe. The first phase III trial, BLISS-52, completed the enrolment of 867 patients in Asia, South America and Eastern Europe this April.

Copyright PA Business 2008

Human Genome Sciences

Your comments: (terms and conditions apply)

“Yes, I do have high hopes. My wife has suffered from SLE since 2000. Although the flares are less common, we are still suffering from side affects from all 7 medications she is currently taking.” – JC, Atlanta, USA

Be in the know
Subscribe to Hospital Pharmacy Europe newsletter and magazine