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Publication Detail
An evaluation of voclosporin for the treatment of lupus nephritis.
INTRODUCTION: Lupus nephritis (LN) is associated with significant morbidity and mortality. Current treatment outcomes remain suboptimal. No disease modifying medications are licensed for the treatment of LN. Voclosporin, a novel calcineurin inhibitor, has been investigated as induction therapy in LN in combination with myocophenolate mofetil (MMF) and a glucocorticoid (GC). Two phase II trials of voclosporin were the first trials of a potential treatment of active LN that met their primary endpoints. Areas covered: This article reviews the pharmacology of voclosporin and the efficacy and safety data from the two existing phase II trials. In the phase IIb randomized controlled trial AURA-LV, voclosporin was shown to be superior to placebo, when used in combination with MMF (1-2 g/day) and GC, in achieving remission in active LN. Expert opinion: While the positive outcome of existing trials is promising, further data confirming its efficacy and evaluating its safety are required. A phase III trial is currently recruiting. Importantly, the positive results were achieved despite a novel and rapid GC taper regime, suggesting that rapid taper of GC may be a viable treatment option in active LN which merits further investigation.
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