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Editorial

More about masitinib

Ulrich A Walker

Author Affiliations

Basel University Department of Rheumatology, Felix Platter Spital, Burgfelderstrasse, 4012 Basel, Switzerland

Arthritis Research & Therapy 2009, 11:120  doi:10.1186/ar2734


See related research article by Tebib et al., http://arthritis-research.com/content/11/3/R95

Published: 13 July 2009

Abstract

A dose-escalating phase II trial studied masitinib, an oral tyrosine kinase inhibitor, in 43 patients with rheumatoid arthritis. Masitinib induced American College of Rheumatology (ACR)20, ACR50 and ACR70 responses in 54%, 26% and 8% of patients, respectively. A placebo group was not included. Thirty-seven per cent of the patients withdrew before the 12-week end-point was reached, primarily because of adverse events. These findings are the first on the efficacy of tyrosine kinase inhibition in a sizeable population. Future work should focus on delineating the tyrosine kinase that is most important in maintaining rheumatoid activity and address potential long-term toxicities such as gonadal insufficiency, teratogenicity and cardiotoxicity.