CTI BioPharma Corp announced topline results from the PRE-VENT trial (NCT04404361) of pacritinib in hospitalized patients with severe COVID-19. PRE-VENT, a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled multicenter study, compared pacritinib/standard of care versus placebo/standard of care in hospitalized patients with severe COVID-19, including patients with and without cancer. The primary endpoint of the trial was the proportion of patients who progressed to invasive mechanical ventilation and/or extracorporeal membrane oxygenation or died by Day 28. The study was recently amended to a Phase 2 design due to the availability of COVID-19 vaccines and an evolving COVID-19 environment.
The final PRE-VENT analysis was conducted following the randomization of 200 patients. In patients with severe COVID-19 treated with pacritinib/standard of care, compared to placebo/standard of care, a statistically significant improvement in the primary endpoint of progression to invasive mechanical ventilation and/or extracorporeal membrane oxygenation or death by Day 28 was not demonstrated (26.3% vs. 24.8% [OR: 1.01 (95% CI: 0.51-1.99)], P=0.98).
Pacritinib was generally well-tolerated by patients with severe COVID-19, with lower rates of grade 3+ events and serious adverse events being reported in patients treated with pacritinib/standard of care compared to placebo/standard of care (29.2% vs. 40.6% and 20.8% vs. 32.7%, respectively). The most common adverse events comparing pacritinib/standard of care to placebo/standard of care were increased alanine aminotransferase (15.6% vs. 16.8%), anemia (12.5% vs. 17.8%), bradycardia (15.6% vs. 10.9%), constipation (12.5% vs. 12.9%), hypokalemia (12.5% vs. 12.9%), and hyperkalemia (9.4% vs. 10.9%).
“Last year, we launched the PRE-VENT study of pacritinib in patients with severe COVID-19 in response to the pandemic and an unprecedented medical need to improve outcomes for these patients,” said Adam R. Craig, M.D., Ph.D., President and Chief Executive Officer of CTI BioPharma. “Although pacritinib was well tolerated on study, it did not demonstrate a clinical benefit in treating the sickest patients with COVID-19. We would like to thank all the patients, families, physicians, and medical teams who participated in this study during such a difficult time. Based on the results of this study, we have decided not to pursue further development of pacritinib for the treatment of severe COVID-19. We will continue to focus our efforts on launch preparedness activities for pacritinib in myelofibrosis, which is currently under Priority Review with a PDUFA date of November 30, 2021.”
Pacritinib is an investigational oral kinase inhibitor with specificity for JAK2, IRAK1, and CSF1R, but not JAK1. The JAK family of enzymes is a central component in signal transduction pathways, which are critical to normal blood cell growth and development, as well as inflammatory cytokine expression and immune responses. Mutations in these kinases have been shown to be directly related to the development of a variety of blood-related cancers, including myeloproliferative neoplasms, leukemia, and lymphoma. In addition to myelofibrosis, the kinase profile of pacritinib suggests its potential therapeutic utility in conditions such as acute myeloid leukemia (AML), myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS), chronic myelomonocytic leukemia (CMML), and chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL), due to its inhibition of c-fms, IRAK1, JAK2 and FLT.
About CTI BioPharma Corp.
We are a biopharmaceutical company focused on the acquisition, development and commercialization of novel targeted therapies for blood-related cancers that offer a unique benefit to patients and their healthcare providers. We concentrate our efforts on treatments that target blood-related cancers where there is an unmet medical need. In particular, we are focused on developing and commercializing pacritinib, our product candidate currently in active late-stage development. We are headquartered in Seattle, Washington.