Alder BioPharmaceuticals has submitted a biologics license application (BLA) for eptinezumab, a humanized IgG1 monoclonal antibody that targets calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP), for migraine prevention. If the US Food and Drug Administration grants approval, Alder will be on track to launch the drug in Q1 2020. The BLA included data from the PROMISE 1 and PROMISE 2 studies, which evaluated the effects of eptinezumab in episodic migraine patients (n=888) or chronic migraine patients (n=1,072), respectively. In PROMISE 1, the primary and key secondary endpoints were met, and the safety and tolerability were similar to placebo, while in PROMISE 2, the primary and all key secondary endpoints were met, and the safety and tolerability was consistent with earlier eptinezumab studies.
Alder announced one-year results from the PROMISE 1 study in June 2018, which indicated that, following the first quarterly infusion, episodic migraine patients treated with 300 mg eptinezumab experienced 4.3 fewer monthly migraine days (MMDs) from a baseline of 8 MMDs, compared to 3.2 fewer MMDs for placebo from baseline (p= 0.0001). At one year after the third and fourth quarterly infusions, patients treated with 300 mg eptinezumab experienced further gains in efficacy, with a reduction of 5.2 fewer MMDs compared to 4.0 fewer MMDs for placebo-treated patients. In addition, ~31% of episodic migraine patients achieved, on average per month, 100% reduction of migraine days from baseline compared to ~ 21% for placebo. New 6-month results from the PROMISE 2 study were also released in June 2018. These results indicated that, after the first quarterly infusion, chronic migraine patients dosed with 300 mg of eptinezumab experienced 8.2 fewer MMDs, from a baseline of 16 MMDs, compared to 5.6 fewer MMDs for placebo from baseline (p <.0001). A further reduction in MMDs was seen following a second infusion; 8.8 fewer MMDs for patients dosed with 300 mg compared to 6.2 fewer MMDs for those with placebo. In addition, ~ 21% of chronic migraine patients achieved, on average, 100% reduction of MMDs from baseline compared to 9% for placebo after two quarterly infusions of 300 mg of eptinezumab.
If approved, eptinezumab would become the fourth antibody therapeutic for migraine prevention on the US market, following the approval of erenumab-aooe (Aimovig; Novartis), galcanezumab-gnlm (Emgality; Eli Lilly & Company) and fremanezumab-vfrm (Ajovy; Teva Pharmaceuticals) in 2018.