Pruritus is an important symptom in psoriasis with no targeted treatment. Tropomyosin-receptor kinase A (TrkA) is associated with pruritus and psoriatic plaque formation. We report the efficacy of a TrkA inhibitor, CT327, on pruritus in psoriasis. A randomised, double- blind, vehicle-controlled Phase 2b clinical trial was conducted in 160 subjects. No effect was found on psoriasis severity using Investigator’s Global Assessment (primary endpoint). However, clinically and statistically significant reductions in pruritus were observed in the 108 patient subset reporting at least moderate pruritus at baseline (37.1 mm visual analogue scale improvement (95% CI [–37.5, –6.2], p = 0.0067) for lowest dose; secondary endpoint). Significant modified Psoriasis Area and Severity Index reductions were found in this subset (p < 0.05). Experiments exploring capsaicin-mediated calcium influx, important in pruritus signalling, were performed in sensory neurons. CT327 inhibited capsaicin responses, indicating action at the nerve growth factor-TrkA-TRPV1 pathway. TrkA is a key target in pruritus, and CT327 has potential to become an effective and safe first-in-class treatment.
- Nerve growth factor
- Phase 2b
- Tropomyosin-receptor kinase A
- Visual analogue scale
ASJC Scopus subject areas