A Multicenter, Randomized, Double-Blind Trial of EverolimusVersusAzathioprine and Placebo to Maintain Steroid-Induced Remission in Patients With Moderate-to-Severe Active Crohn's Disease
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OBJECTIVES: A prospective study was undertaken to compare the efficacy of everolimus versus azathioprine or placebo in maintaining steroid-induced remission in active Crohn's disease (CD) and assess the safety and pharmacokinetics of everolimus. METHODS: This was a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, proof-of-concept study in adults with moderate-to-severe active CD. The patients received oral steroids for a rapid induction of remission plus everolimus 6 mg/day, azathioprine 2.5 mg/kg/day, or placebo as maintenance treatment. The main outcome measure was the treatment success, defined as a steroid-free remission by the end of month 3 and maintained until study cutoff without the use of prohibited efficacy treatments. RESULTS: Following an interim analysis, the study was terminated before enrollment was completed due to the lack of efficacy. The full intent-to-treat population comprised 138 patients. Only 96 patients who entered the study > or =7 months prior to data cutoff were included in the primary efficacy population. The treatment success was achieved in 13 of 38 everolimus patients, 22 of 36 azathioprine patients, and 8 of 22 placebo patients. Using the Kaplan-Meier estimates at month 7, the incidence of treatment success was 22.0% with everolimus group (95% confidence interval [CI] 6.7-37.3%, P= 0.610 vs placebo), 38.3% with azathioprine group (95% CI 20.6-55.9%, P= 0.500 vs placebo), and 28.8% with placebo group (95% CI 7.7-49.9%). The type and incidence of adverse events in the everolimus cohort were similar to those reported in the approved transplantation indications. CONCLUSIONS: The safety and tolerability of everolimus (6 mg/day) in patients with active CD were comparable to azathioprine. At this dose, everolimus is not more efficacious in achieving a steroid-free remission in active CD than the comparators.
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