DOI: 10.1093/bjd/ljad162.007 ISSN: 0007-0963

377 Real-world use of OPZELURA™: safety analysis at 1 year

Wilson Hu, Michele Thornton, Robert A   Livingston
  • Dermatology


OPZELURA™ (ruxolitinib cream) became the first approved topical Janus kinase inhibitor (JAKi) in the USA on September 21, 2021, for treatment of mild to moderate atopic dermatitis and on July 18, 2022 for nonsegmental vitiligo. This study aims to review postmarketing safety encompassing nearly 14,000 patient-years of treatment during the first year of market approval through September 20, 2022. The Incyte global safety database and the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Adverse Event Reporting System were queried for adverse event (AE) reports received for OPZELURA between September 21, 2021 and September 20, 2022. Search of these databases found 294 postmarketing individual case safety reports (ICSRs) containing 585 nonserious AEs, four serious AEs and no fatal AEs. Of the 294 ICSRs, 220 (75%) were received from spontaneous sources and 74 (25%) were received from noninterventional/solicited sources. Consumers reported 221 ICSRs (75%) and 73 (25%) were medically confirmed by a healthcare professional (i.e. nurse, pharmacist and physician). Gender was reported in 257 ICSRs; of these, 81 (32%) involved male patients and 176 (68%) involved female patients. Age was reported in 64 ICSRs (22%), with a median age of 39 years. The AEs (any unfavorable sign, symptom or disease) with frequency >2% out of all events included application site pain (16 events), dermatitis atopic, skin irritation (15 events each), scratch (14 events) and condition aggravated (13 events). Application site pain, skin irritation and scratch were mostly related to an initial issue with cream texture that was rapidly addressed. ‘Dermatitis atopic’ and ‘condition aggravated’ reflected worsening of the underlying condition or lack of improvement. The four serious AEs were skin cancer (two events), pericarditis and thrombocytopenia (one event each), all of which had insufficient information for assessment of relatedness to OPZELURA. Because indications for OPZELURA are inflammatory conditions, OPZELURA has been subject to the same class warnings as oral JAKi that include the risk of serious infections, mortality, malignancy, major adverse cardiovascular events and thrombosis, imposed by FDA subsequent to the ORAL Surveillance trial of tofacitinib in rheumatoid arthritis (Kragstrup et al., RMD Open, 2022; 8:e002236). Topical application of OPZELURA results in low systemic bioavailability of ruxolitinib, and serious AEs associated with oral JAKi were not reported with OPZELURA. Safety data from the first year of marketing confirm that OPZELURA is well tolerated, without significant systemic AEs, and with a low incidence of application site reactions.

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