Topical treatment in trial combats psoriasis itch

| Melissa Leavitt

Itch can take a heavy toll on the quality of life of people with psoriasis. A study published last year suggested that getting rid of itch might even be as important to patients as getting clear skin.

Now relief from the itch of psoriasis may be one step closer. According to the results of a Phase II clinical trial, a topical treatment being developed by Creabilis significantly reduced itch in psoriasis patients.

However, the ointment, known as CT327, was not as effective at reducing psoriasis severity in some patients, researchers reported.

Results from the trial appeared in January in the journal Acta Dermato-Venereologica. The trial, which involved 160 patients, compared CT327 to a placebo ointment. All patients applied their ointment twice a day for two months.

Patients who experienced at least moderate levels of itch at the beginning of the trial said their itch reduced by up to 59 percent after two months of treatment with CT327. One month after patients stopped using the ointment, their itch was back up to the level it was before they started the trial, researchers reported.

Patients taking the placebo ointment experienced an average reduction in itch of about 21 percent, according to the data. 

CT327 did reduce psoriasis severity in some patients, but not enough to be considered meaningful, researchers reported.

None of the patients who tried CT327 reported having a bad skin reaction to the ointment, researchers reported. About 50 percent of patients taking either CT327 or the placebo ointment did experience some kind of illness or other medical event while on the treatment, with the most common including cold or headache, according to the data.

About 85 percent of people with psoriasis suffer from itch, and 45 percent of people with psoriatic itch say that their treatments don’t offer much relief, according to the researchers. 

Phase III trials for CT327 are being planned, according to the Creabilis website. The topical is not yet available by prescription.

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