Filgotinib is in development for the treatment of adults with moderate to severe active rheumatoid arthritis (RA) as front-line therapy or for those which previous treatment with a disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drug (DMARD) has not worked or are unable to take it. RA is a long-term, autoimmune disease that causes pain, swelling and stiffness in the joints. The condition occurs in women more often than men. The symptoms usually affect the hands, feet and wrists. There may be periods where symptoms become worse, known as flare-ups. Some people with RA also experience problems in other parts of the body, or more general symptoms such as tiredness and weight loss.
Filgotinib is a new Janus Kinase (JAK) inhibitor. JAK pathways are involved in the inflammatory process in RA. Filgotinib is highly selective for JAK1. By blocking the JAK1 pathway, filgotinib may help ease the RA symptoms. Filgotinib can be taken orally as a tablet once a day and it has shown to be safe. Filgotinib may be taken as monotherapy or in combination with methotrexate or other non-biologic DMARDs. If approved for the treatment of moderate to severe RA, filgotinib will offer an additional front line or a later line treatment option for this population group.
Upadacitinib is in clinical development for the treatment of adults with active psoriatic arthritis who have an inadequate response to at least one biological or non-biological Disease Modifying Anti-Rheumatic Drug (DMARDs). Psoriatic arthritis is a type of chronic inflammatory arthritis affecting the joints and connective tissue and is associated with psoriasis of the skin or nails. Around two in every five people with psoriasis will develop psoriatic arthritis. Although the exact cause of the disease still remains unknown, it is thought to occur as a result of the immune system mistakenly attacking healthy tissues around the joint and bones. Psoriatic arthritis can get progressively worse and may lead to the joints becoming permanently damaged or deformed.