Safety of sublingual immunotherapy Timothy grass tablet in subjects with allergic rhinitis with or without conjunctivitis and history of asthma
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BACKGROUND: Patients with asthma may be more susceptible to adverse events (AEs) with sublingual immunotherapy tablet (SLIT-tablet) treatment, such as severe systemic reactions and asthma-related events. Using data from eight trials of grass SLIT-tablet in subjects with allergic rhinitis with/without conjunctivitis (AR/C), AE frequencies were determined in adults and children with and without reported asthma. METHODS: Data from randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trials of Timothy grass SLIT-tablet MK-7243 (2800 BAU/75 000 SQ-T, Merck/ALK-Abelló) were pooled for post hoc analyses. Subjects with uncontrolled and severe asthma were excluded from the trials. Frequencies for treatment-emergent AEs (TEAEs), local allergic swelling (mouth or throat), systemic allergic reactions, and asthma-related treatment-related AEs (TRAEs) were calculated. RESULTS: Among adults (n = 3314) and children (n = 881), 24% and 31%, respectively, had reported asthma. No serious local allergic swellings or serious systemic allergic reactions occurred in subjects with asthma treated with SLIT-tablet. There was no evidence of increased TEAEs, systemic allergic reactions, or severe local allergic swellings in adults or children with asthma treated with grass SLIT-tablet versus subjects without asthma in or outside of pollen season. There were 6/120 asthma-related TRAEs assessed as severe with grass SLIT-tablet and 2/60 with placebo, without a consistent trend among subjects with and without asthma (5 and 3 events, respectively). CONCLUSIONS: In the AR/C subjects with reported well-controlled mild asthma included in these studies, grass SLIT-tablet did not increase TEAE frequency, severe local allergic swelling, or systemic allergic reactions versus subjects without asthma. There was no indication that treatment led to acute asthma worsening.
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