Author: Anoma Ranaweera, Medical Writer, Auckland, New Zealand; Chief Editor: Dr Amanda Oakley, Dermatologist, Hamilton, New Zealand, March 2015.
In January 2015, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved secukinumab (Cosentyx™, Novartis, USA) for the treatment of moderate-to-severe plaque psoriasis in adult patients who are candidates for systemic therapy (a drug that is absorbed into the bloodstream and distributed to all parts of the body, eg methotrexate, acitretin or ciclosporin) or phototherapy (light therapy).
The European Medicines Agency's Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use (CHMP) has recommended marketing authorisation for secukinumab. It was classified as prescription medicine by Medsafe New Zealand in August 2015.
Secukinumab is very effective in the treatment of severe psoriasis and acts fast. It appears very safe. However, only small numbers of patients have been treated to date (March 2015).
In clinical trials the following adverse events have been observed at an incidence >2%:
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