If you are a person who likes to follow what's in the pipeline for arthritis, you likely know that AstraZeneca has been developing fostamatinib for rheumatoid arthritis. Fostamatinib is an oral disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drug (DMARD). Fostamatinib has been viewed as the next competitor to injectable biologic drugs, such as Humira, and the newest oral treatment for rheumatoid arthritis, Xeljanz. In the latest trial results (OSKIRA-1), however, fostamatinib only met one of two goals.
In the OSKIRA-1 Phase III study, fostamatinib achieved statistically significant improvement in the signs and symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis at 24 weeks compared to placebo. But, fostamatinib did not show x-ray evidence of improvement in the progression of joint damage. Side effects included hypertension, diarrhea, nausea, headache, and the common cold.
The results were disappointing for those with high hopes for fostamatinib. Researchers will wait for more results to further evaluate the experimental drug. Results from OSKIRA-2 and OSKIRA-3 are due to be released in the second quarter of 2013.
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