A randomised, controlled, double blind, escalating dose study of alicaforsen enema in active ulcerative colitis

van Deventer, S. J. H.; Tami, J. A.; Wedel, M. K.
December 2004
Gut;Dec2004, Vol. 53 Issue 12, p1646
Academic Journal
Objective: To evaluate the safely and efficacy of an enema formulation of alicaforsen, an antisense inhibitor of intercellular adhesion molecule, after 1, 3, and 6 months. Methods: This was a randomised, placebo controlled, double blind, escalating dose multicentre study in 40 patients with mild to moderately active distal ulcerative colitis (disease activity index (DAI) 4-10). Patients were assigned to four dosing cohorts of 10 patients each (eight active, two placebo). Each patient received 60 ml of alicaforsen enema (0.1, 0.5, 2, or 4 mg/ml or placebo) once daily for 28 consecutive days. Safety and efficacy (DAI and clinical activity index) scores were evaluated up to six months alter initiation of dosing. Results: At day 29, alicaforsen enema resulted in dose dependent improvement in DAI (overall p = 0.003). Alicaforsen 4 mg/ml improved DAI by 70% compared with the placebo response of 28% (p = 0.004). Alicaforsen 2 and 4 mg/ml improved DAI status by 72% and 68% compared with a placebo response of 11.5% at month 3 (p = 0.016 and 0.021, respectively). Specifically, DAI improved from 5.6 to 1.6 and from 6.3 to 2.5 in the 2 and 4 mg/ml groups compared with placebo (7.5 to 6.1). None of the patients in the 4 mg/ml group compared with 4/8 placebo patients required additional medical or surgical intervention over baseline during the six month period after starting the enema treatment. The safety profile was favourable. Conclusions: Alicaforsen enema showed promising acute and long term benefit in patients with mild to moderate descending ulcerative colitis. Alicaforsen enemas had a favourable safely profile. These findings require verification in larger randomised controlled clinical trials.


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