Treatment of seasonal allergic rhinoconjunctivitis with a once-daily SQ-standardized grass allergy immunotherapy tablet
Department of Medicine, Division of Allergy and Immunology, National Jewish Health Center, Denver, CO 80206, USA. Current Medical Research and Opinion
(Impact Factor: 2.65).
04/2012; 28(6):1043-51. DOI: 10.1185/03007995.2012.684676
Specific immunotherapy with the grass allergy immunotherapy tablet (AIT) has been developed as an effective, well tolerated, and convenient treatment for grass pollen induced seasonal allergic rhinoconjunctivitis (ARC). Six phase II/III randomized, placebo-controlled trials with the duration of a single grass pollen season of treatment using the SQ-standardized grass AIT, Grazax (Phleum pratense, 75,000 SQ-T/2,800 BAU, ALK, Denmark), have been published previously. This review compares results from these trials.
As outcome measures and methods of assessing them were similar across the trials, we have summarized the main efficacy findings (Total Combined Score [TCS], average daily rhinoconjunctivitis symptom and medication scores, percentage of well days, quality of life scores) during a single season of treatment with grass AIT in adults and children with seasonal ARC.
The results of the European and North American trials were similar. Compared with the placebo group, who received symptomatic medications only, treatment with grass AIT resulted in fewer rhinoconjunctivitis symptoms, a lower intake of symptomatic medication, better patient self-rated quality of life and a greater percentage of well days during the entire grass pollen season. The data indicate that grass AIT treatment is equally effective in adults and children; the measured effect varies with pollen exposure, but is comparable across regions and continents, with a consistent difference compared with placebo in TCS that was above 20% for all trials. Local adverse events were experienced by the majority of patients. These reactions were generally mild to moderate in severity and transient in duration. Systemic adverse events were rare.
This review confirms SQ-standardized grass AIT as a suitable therapeutic option for seasonal use in patients aged 5 years or older with grass pollen induced ARC.
Available from: Hendrik Nolte
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The objective was to evaluate the association between grass pollen exposure, allergy symptoms and impact on measured treatment effect after grass sublingual immunotherapy (SLIT)-tablet treatment. Methods
The association between grass pollen counts and total combined rhinoconjunctivitis symptom and medication score (TCS) was based on a post hoc analysis of data collected over six trials and seven grass pollen seasons across North America and Europe, including 2363 subjects treated with grass SLIT-tablet or placebo. Daily pollen counts were obtained from centralized pollen databases. The effect of treatment on the relationship between the TCS and pollen counts was investigated, and the relative difference between grass SLIT-tablet and placebo as a function of average grass pollen counts was modelled by linear regression. ResultsThe magnitude of treatment effect based on TCS was greater with higher pollen exposure (P < 0.001). The relative treatment effect in terms of TCS for each trial was correlated with the average grass pollen exposure during the first period of the season, with predicted reduction in TCS = 12% + 0.35% × pollen count (slope significantly different from 0, P = 0.003; R2 = 0.66). Corresponding correlations to the entire grass pollen season and to the peak season were equally good, whereas there was a poor correlation between difference in measured efficacy and pollen exposure during the last part of the season. Conclusions
In seasonal allergy trials with grass SLIT-tablet, the observed treatment effect is highly dependent on pollen exposure with the magnitude being greater with higher pollen exposure. This is an important relationship to consider when interpreting individual clinical trial results.
Available from: PubMed Central
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ABSTRACT: In this paper, we review the current management of allergic rhinitis and new directions for future treatment. Currently, management includes pharmacotherapy, allergen avoidance and possibly immunotherapy. The simple washing of nasal cavities using isotonic saline provides a significant improvement and is useful, particularly in children. The most effective medication in persistent rhinitis used singly is topical corticosteroid, which decreases all symptoms, including ocular ones. Antihistamines reduce nasal itch, sneeze and rhinorrhea and can be used orally or topically. When intranasal antihistamine is used together with topical corticosteroid, the combination is more effective and acts more rapidly than either drug used alone. Alternative therapies, such as homeopathy, acupuncture and intranasal carbon dioxide, or devices such nasal air filters or intranasal cellulose, have produced some positive results in small trials but are not recommended by Allergic Rhinitis and its Impact on Asthma (ARIA).
In the field of allergic immunotherapy, subcutaneous and sublingual routes are currently used, the former being perhaps more efficient and the latter safer. Sublingual tablets are now available. Their efficacy compared to standard routes needs to be evaluated. Efforts have been made to develop more effective and simpler immunotherapy by modifying allergens and developing alternative routes.
Standard allergen avoidance procedures used alone do not provide positive results. A comprehensive, multi-trigger, multi-component approach is needed, including avoidance of pollutants such as cigarette smoke.
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300IR 5-grass pollen sublingual immunotherapy tablets have been approved for the treatment of allergic rhinitis (AR) with or without conjunctivitis in adults and children >5 years with grass pollen allergy. This study was designed to review data on nasal symptoms with 300IR 5-grass pollen sublingual tablets in adults and children.
We reviewed data from four double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomized clinical trials. Two groups of patients who received a daily dose of either placebo or 300IR 5-grass pollen sublingual tablets starting 4 months before the expected start of the pollen season and continuing through the season were compared (analysis of covariance) for scores of sneezing, rhinorrhea, nasal pruritus, nasal congestion, total nasal symptom score (TNSS), and adult Rhinoconjunctivitis Quality of Life Questionnaire (RQLQ) scores.
Data for 266 children (one pediatric trial) and 1036 adults (three trials) were analyzed. Compared with the placebo groups, mean TNSS in the 300IR groups was lower by 22% in children and 19-36% in adults. Among the four nasal symptoms, the lowest scores relative to placebo were for nasal congestion in children (31%) and adults (43%). Mean adult RQLQ scores were 21-31% lower in the 300IR group than in the placebo group.
Allergen immunotherapy with 300IR 5-grass pollen sublingual tablets was consistently associated with AR symptom relief in adults and children and provided a clinically meaningful improvement in quality of life.
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