In an earlier post, I documented some of the new biologic medicines for RA in the development pipeline. There continues to be a constant stream of biologic drugs in research and development. But in the past few years, a new line of research led to the investigation of a set of molecules called kinases that are involved in the complex biological processes of RA. The development of kinase inhibitors is based on the theory that inhibition can slow down the production of inflammatory cytokines thereby controlling the disease processes. These processes are linked to the so-called JAK-STAT pathway that is being studied in numerous diseases.
Currently, there is only one kinase inhibitor approved for RA in the United States. Xeljanz, or tofacitinib, was developed and is marketed by Pfizer. The European Medicines Agency did not approve Xeljanz because of lack of efficacy and safety. Some European and Arab countries including Russia approved it.
Below is a list of some of the Kinase inhibitors currently in the development and trial pipeline. There are many others that died in the development pipeline.
CC-292 by Cellgene. In Phase II clinical trials.
PLX5622 by Plexxikon. In Phase I clinical trials.
AB494 by Abbvie. In Phase II clinical trials.
HM71224 by Hanmi. In Phase I clinical trials.
It remains to be seen whether or not JAK-STAT inhibitors will become a fruitful treatment option for those with rheumatoid arthritis.