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GPP medication launch

UAE health ministry approves Spesolimab for GPP flares

ABU DHABI, April 30, 2024

The UAE Ministry of Health and Prevention (MOHAP) has approved the first and only therapy by Boehringer Ingelheim for the treatment of adult generalised pustular psoriasis (GPP) flares. 
 
Spesolimab, the first treatment of its kind in the UAE by Boehringer Ingelheim is the only FDA and EMA-approved medication used to treat GPP flares in adult patients and works to help block a source of inflammation that may cause GPP flares.  
 
Boehringer Ingelheim, one of the world’s leading research-driven biopharmaceutical companies, has recently launched its treatment for (GPP) Flares in the UAE, offering relief to patients with the rare skin condition. In addition to this treatment addressing a high unmet medical for patients’ physical symptoms, it also contributes to improving the overall quality of life of people living with GPP, marking an important advancement in the regional management of the condition.
 
Severe form of Psoriasis
Generalised Pustular Psoriasis is a rare and severe form of psoriasis that affects the skin, causing painful, pus-filled blisters to erupt on the body. GPP patients tend to have sudden flares that can last for a few weeks and are quite unpredictable. The debilitating skin condition takes over multiple facets of a person’s life affecting employment, relationships, and overall wellbeing.  In addition to the chronic nature of GPP, patients are often subjected to stigmatisation largely due to the baseless fear that the condition is contagious, and studies have reported that a higher proportion of patients with GPP had clinically reported anxiety and depression. 
 
Spesolimab, Boehringer Ingelheim’s treatment for GPP flares, was granted approval by the Ministry of Health and Prevention (MOHAP), UAE in July 2023. Additionally, the infusion therapy was granted conditional marketing authorisation by the European Commission, based on evidence from the EFFISAYIL 1 trial, which demonstrated that over half of the spesolimab-treated patients were free of pustules, one week after receiving a single dose.  Spesolimab, is a novel, selective antibody that blocks the activation of the interleukin-36 receptor (IL-36R), a signaling pathway within the immune system shown to be involved in the pathogenesis of GPP. 
 
Ousama Alhaj, General Manager and Head of Human Pharma at Boehringer Ingelheim, Near East and UAE, said: “Boehringer Ingelheim is proud to bring this much needed treatment to patients living with GPP. We recognise how devastating this rare skin disease can be for patients, their families and caregivers. GPP can be life-threatening and until today there have been no specific approved therapies for treating the devastating GPP flares in the UAE. As a research-driven company, our commitment lies in bridging medical gaps by advancing the science behind our rare disease therapies, paving the way for improved health outcomes and fulfilling our purpose of transforming lives today and for generations to come.”
 
Much-needed relief
Marjan Maghami, Medical Director at Boehringer Ingelheim, Near East and UAE, said: “The onset of a GPP flare may start with the skin turning red and feeling tender, followed by the formation of pustules. These flares are unpredictable and can have a widespread impact on daily activities. The approval of spesolimab brings much-needed relief to the patients living with this debilitating and visible skin condition. Following the prescribed treatment plan can help improve skin symptoms and other symptoms, such as fever, joint pain, and extreme tiredness. The goal of treatment is to make symptoms less severe, so that the patient can heal faster, resume their daily activities, and avoid complications that may require hospitalisation."
 
Dr Muna Almurrawi, President of Emirates Dermatology Society, added: “Given that GPP flares can be fatal, often leading to emergencies and requiring urgent medical attention, innovative treatments such as Spesolimab mark a turning point in current GPP treatment landscape. Spesolimab acts by blocking the source of inflammation that may cause GPP flares thereby alleviating the symptoms resulting from the flare. Such advanced therapies hold promise in substantially enhancing quality of life for patients living with GPP.”--TradeArabia News Service
 



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