Epidermolysis bullosa (EB) is a rare lifelong inherited disease of the skin in which the outer layer of the skin separates from the inner layer. The disease is caused by abnormalities in the genes responsible for the production of the proteins that make the skin strong and elastic. EB is characterised by fragile skin with blistering of the skin following minor mechanical trauma. In some cases, internal linings of the mouth and intestinal tract and organs are also affected. EB is debilitating in the long term and in some forms is life threatening, mainly because of the severe blistering, infections of the skin and the effects on the body caused by poor nutrition. In some types of EB, an aggressive form of skin cancer also occurs in the second and third decade of life. In all forms of EB, the blistering causes pain, itch, a poor quality of life and specialist intervention and considerations are required to minimise complications and improve quality of life.
Currently there is no cure for EB and management is based on symptomatic treatment. Oleogel-S10 is a topical gel and is being developed as a prescription medicine as for EB, for which there are limited treatment options. Oleogel-S10 causes the keratinocytes (cells that regenerate the outer layer of the skin) to migrate (move across the wound) and become mature epithelial skin cells, resulting in rapid wound healing. If licensed, oleogel-S10 will offer a treatment option for wound care in patients with EB who currently have limited therapies available.
Secukinumab as a subcutaneous injection is in clinical development for the treatment of enthesitis related arthritis (ERA) and juvenile psoriatic arthritis (JPsA). These conditions belong to a group of arthritis conditions of unknown cause known as juvenile idiopathic arthritis which affect children. JPsA patients have arthritis and psoriasis, an inflammatory skin disease and ERA patients have arthritis and enthesitis, inflammation of the ligaments and tendons. These conditions are the result of the immune system mistakenly attacking the body’s own cells at the joints and the skin or tendons, causing swelling, pain and reduced mobility.