Harmony Biosciences Initiates A Phase 2 Clinical Trial In Myotonic Dystrophy
"In addition to the primary symptoms of myotonia and muscle weakness in patients with type 1 myotonic dystrophy, the non-muscular symptoms of excessive daytime sleepiness, fatigue, and cognitive dysfunction are very common in these patients and have a negative impact on daily functioning as much as, or more so, than the primary muscle symptoms of the disease," said Harmony's Chief Medical Officer,
Myotonic dystrophy is the most common form of adult-onset muscular dystrophy. It is a genetic disorder inherited in an autosomal-dominant pattern. Latest estimates suggest a prevalence of about one per 2,100 people with the genetic defect for DM1, which is the most common form of this disorder. This equates to about 160,000 people in the
The Phase 2 clinical trial is a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study designed to assess the safety and efficacy of pitolisant in patients with DM1 ages 18 – 65 years. Approximately 135 patients will be randomized at baseline to low-dose pitolisant, high-dose pitolisant, or placebo in a 1:1:1 treatment ratio titrated over three weeks, followed by eight weeks of stable dosing. Patients who complete the randomized, controlled phase of the trial will be eligible to participate in an open-label extension phase to assess the long-term safety and effectiveness of pitolisant in patients with DM1.
The primary objective of the trial is to evaluate the effect of pitolisant compared with placebo on EDS. Secondary objectives include assessments of fatigue, specific measures of cognitive function using validated computer-based assessments, and overall disease burden utilizing a disease-specific, patient-reported outcomes instrument for DM1. Topline results are anticipated from the Phase 2 trial in the second half of 2022.
Pitolisant is marketed as WAKIX® in the
About WAKIX® (pitolisant) Tablets
WAKIX, a first-in-class medication, is approved by the
Important Safety Information
WAKIX is contraindicated in patients with known hypersensitivity to pitolisant or any component of the formulation and in patients with severe hepatic impairment. WAKIX is extensively metabolized by the liver and there is a significant increase in WAKIX exposure in patients with moderate impairment.
WAKIX prolongs the QT interval. Avoid use of WAKIX in patients with known QT prolongation or in combination with other drugs known to prolong the QT interval. Avoid use of WAKIX in patients with a history of cardiac arrhythmias, as well as other circumstances that may increase the risk of the occurrence of torsade de pointes or sudden death, including symptomatic bradycardia, hypokalemia or hypomagnesemia, and the presence of congenital prolongation of the QT interval.
The risk of QT prolongation may be greater in patients with hepatic or renal impairment due to higher concentrations of pitolisant; monitor these patients for increased QTc. Dosage modification is recommended in patients with moderate hepatic impairment and moderate or severe renal impairment. WAKIX is not recommended in patients with end-stage renal disease (ESRD).
In the placebo-controlled clinical trials conducted in patients with narcolepsy with or without cataplexy, the most common adverse reactions (≥5% and twice placebo) for WAKIX were insomnia (6%), nausea (6%), and anxiety (5%). Other adverse reactions that occurred at ≥2% and more frequently than in patients treated with placebo included headache, upper respiratory infection, musculoskeletal pain, heart rate increased, hallucinations, irritability, abdominal pain, sleep disturbance, decreased appetite, cataplexy, dry mouth, and rash.
Please see the Full Prescribing Information for WAKIX for more information.
About Harmony Biosciences
Forward Looking Statement
This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. All statements contained in this press release that do not relate to matters of historical fact should be considered forward-looking statements, including statements regarding our product WAKIX. These statements are neither promises nor guarantees, but involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other important factors that may cause our actual results, performance or achievements to be materially different from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements, including, but not limited to, the following: our commercialization efforts and strategy for WAKIX; the rate and degree of market acceptance and clinical utility of WAKIX, pitolisant in additional indications, if approved, and any other product candidates we may develop or acquire, if approved; our research and development plans, including our plans to explore the therapeutic potential of pitolisant in additional indications; our ongoing and planned clinical trials; our ability to expand the scope of our license agreement with
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