As the first and only biologic targeting both cytokines interleukin (IL)-12 and IL-23, STELARA provides a new therapeutic option for children six years of age and older living with active psoriatic arthritis
Active psoriatic arthritis in pediatric patients is a rare disease affecting five to eight percent of children and adolescents with chronic inflammatory arthritis*1-6
The Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies of Johnson & Johnson today announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved STELARA® (ustekinumab) for the treatment of pediatric patients six years of age and older with active psoriatic arthritis (PsA). This rare disease that resembles adult PsA affects five to eight percent of children and adolescents with chronic inflammatory arthritis.*1-7 Two of the four indications for STELARA now include pediatric patients, further expanding its treatment profile since the first approval in 2009 for adults living with moderate to severe plaque psoriasis (PsO).
STELARA is a fully human monoclonal antibody that selectively inhibits both interleukin (IL)-12 and IL-23, two cytokines thought to play an important role in tempering the overactive inflammatory response in several autoimmune diseases. STELARA is administered as a subcutaneous injection dosed four times per year after two starter doses for the treatment of pediatric patients six years of age and older with active PsA.
“We know active pediatric psoriatic arthritis is a challenging inflammatory disease given its rarity and that symptoms, such as swollen joints and skin lesions, can vary significantly in presentation and severity,” said Terence Rooney, M.D., Ph.D., Vice President, Rheumatology and Maternal Fetal Disease Area, Janssen Research & Development, LLC. “With this pediatric approval of STELARA, we’re pleased to help address the unmet needs of these young patients and provide physicians with a much-needed treatment option that has an established track record of safety and efficacy.”
The FDA’s approval was based on pharmacokinetic (PK) data and extrapolation of the established efficacy and existing safety profile of STELARA in multiple Phase 3 studies in adult and pediatric patients with moderate to severe plaque PsO (PSTELLAR, CADMUS, and CADMUS Jr) and adult patients with active PsA (PSUMMIT I and II). With the limited availability of pediatric PsA patients for inclusion in clinical trials, researchers utilized an extrapolation approach based on previous PK, efficacy and safety observations from a closely adjacent population of pediatric patients with moderate to severe plaque PsO who also had active PsA, as well as adult patients with moderate to severe plaque PsO or active PsA. An analysis of the data demonstrated that PK exposure of STELARA in these pediatric PsO patients with active PsA was consistent with that of Phase 3 clinical trials of STELARA in pediatric PsO patients without active PsA, as well as with adult patients with moderate to severe plaque PsO or adult patients with active PsA, while data on common efficacy endpoints were similar in these pediatric PsO patients with active PsA.
“The approval of STELARA for use in children six years of age and older with active psoriatic arthritis, which follows the 2020 approval for moderate to severe plaque psoriasis in this population, is complemented by more than 12 years of clinical trial and real-world evidence across all approved indications demonstrating the safety and efficacy of this biologic therapy,” said Jennifer Davidson, DO, Vice President of Immunology Medical Affairs, Janssen Scientific Affairs, LLC. “As a global leader in immunology, Janssen is dedicated to reducing the burden of chronic autoimmune diseases, and this additional approval for STELARA builds on our legacy of bringing important treatment options to younger patients.”
Access to STELARA®
Janssen is actively working toward greater patient accessibility through improved commercial first-line formulary coverage, as well as patient-specific support services specifically for patients to start and stay on STELARA® treatment after a prescribing decision has been made.
STELARA withMe offers a comprehensive support program that helps patients get started on STELARA and stay on track. STELARA withMe provides information on insurance coverage, potential out-of-pocket costs, and treatment support, and identifies options that may help make treatment more affordable, including the STELARA withMe Savings Program for commercially insured patients who are eligible.
About Active Psoriatic Arthritis in Pediatric Patients
Active psoriatic arthritis (PsA) in pediatric patients, a rare disease that resembles adult PsA, affects five to eight percent of children and adolescents with chronic inflammatory arthritis.*1-7 Symptoms of active pediatric PsA can vary significantly in presentation and severity from patient to patient, but often include joint inflammation and skin lesions.8 PsA can be a challenging disease to treat – especially in younger populations – reinforcing the need for additional treatment options.
About STELARA® (ustekinumab)9
STELARA® (ustekinumab), a human interleukin (IL)-12 and IL-23 antagonist, is approved in the United States for the treatment of: 1) adults and children six years and older with moderate to severe plaque psoriasis who are candidates for phototherapy or systemic therapy; 2) adults and children six years and older with active psoriatic arthritis; 3) adult patients (18 years and older) with moderately to severely active Crohn’s disease; 4) adult patients (18 years and older) with moderately to severely active ulcerative colitis.
About the Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies of Johnson & Johnson
At Janssen, we’re creating a future where disease is a thing of the past. We’re the Pharmaceutical Companies of Johnson & Johnson, working tirelessly to make that future a reality for patients everywhere by fighting sickness with science, improving access with ingenuity, and healing hopelessness with heart. We focus on areas of medicine where we can make the biggest difference: Cardiovascular, Metabolism, & Retina; Immunology; Infectious Diseases & Vaccines; Neuroscience; Oncology; and Pulmonary Hypertension.