Systemic Lupus Erythematosus Highlights From the 2019 ACR Annual Meeting

Michelle A. Petri, MD, MPH


December 06, 2019

New data relevant to the treatment of systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) were presented at the 2019 annual meeting of the American College of Rheumatology in Atlanta. Dr Michelle Petri, who heads the Johns Hopkins Lupus Center, discusses key findings, including the results of two important clinical trials on the anti–interferon receptor blocker anifrolumab.

TULIP 1, the first of the two phase 3 anifrolumab studies, did not meet its primary outcome of Systemic Lupus Erythematosus Responder Index-4 (SRI-4). Adjusting the NSAID rule only improved some of the secondary endpoints.

However, the second phase 3 anifrolumab trial, TULIP 2, was positive, achieving a BILAG-based combined lupus assessment (BICLA) of 47.8 versus 31.5, giving a delta of 16.3. A secondary SRI-4 achieved a 55.5 versus 37.3 with a delta of 18.2.

Although the totality of the trial evidence appears to be in favor of anifrolumab, the decision now rests with the US Food and Drug Administration.

Another important study, the phase 2 NOBILITY trial, tested the effectiveness of the anti-CD20 drug obinutuzumab in the treatment of SLE. NOBILITY met its primary and key secondary efficacy endpoints.

Petri also highlighted a Johns Hopkins study that concluded hydroxychloroquine blood levels are inversely associated with risk of thrombosis in SLE.


Comments on Medscape are moderated and should be professional in tone and on topic. You must declare any conflicts of interest related to your comments and responses. Please see our Commenting Guide for further information. We reserve the right to remove posts at our sole discretion.