Adalimumab, an anti-tumor necrosis factor antibody, is currently available in a 40 mg/0.8 mL formulation. The objective of this analysis was to evaluate injection site-related pain, safety, and tolerability of a 40 mg/0.4 mL formulation of adalimumab that had fewer excipients, a smaller volume, and a delivery presentation with a smaller gauge needle, versus the current 40 mg/0.8 mL formulation in patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA).
Two identically designed, phase 2, randomized, single-blind, two-period crossover studies were conducted in Belgium and the Czech Republic (Study 1) and Australia, Canada, and Germany (Study 2). In both studies, adults with RA [biologic-naive or current users of 40 mg/0.8 mL adalimumab with an average injection site-related pain rating ≥3 cm on a visual analog scale (VAS; 0–10 cm)] were randomized to receive 40 mg/0.8 mL or 40 mg/0.4 mL adalimumab at visit 1. After 1–2 weeks (depending on patient medication schedule), patients received the other formulation at visit 2. A pain VAS [McGill Pain Questionnaire (MPQ-SF)] and the Draize scale were evaluated immediately after injection and 15 min postinjection. The primary endpoint was immediate pain after injection.
64 and 61 patients were randomized in Studies 1 and 2, respectively. Both studies found a clinically relevant and statistically significant lower immediate pain after injection for the 40 mg/0.4 mL versus the 40 mg/0.8 mL formulation. The mean difference on the VAS for the pooled data (−2.48 cm) was also clinically relevant. Most other endpoints in both studies favored the 40 mg/0.4 mL formulation, and its tolerability and safety profile were consistent with 40 mg/0.8 mL adalimumab.
A 40 mg/0.4 mL adalimumab formulation was well tolerated and associated with less injection site-related pain than the 40 mg/0.8 mL adalimumab formulation.
ClinicalTrials.gov identifier, NCT01561313 and NCT01502423.