Tofacitinib improves hair regrowth in alopaecia areata
JAK inhibitor tofacitinib appear to have therapeutic potential to halt hair loss in patients with alopaecia areata, a recent study has shown.
The open-label pilot study included 12 moderate-to-severe alopaecia areata patients, of whom eight achieved the primary efficacy endpoint of ≥50-percent hair regrowth from baseline. Tofacitinib therapy duration ranged from 6–18 months. The mean time to reach the primary endpoint was 32 weeks.
Of the five patients with either alopaecia universalis or alopaecia totalis, four participants achieved ≥50-percent har regrowth.
Participants who reached the primary efficacy endpoint during the first 6–18 months were followed for an additional 6 months off-treatment. Six patients showed variable hair shedding after treatment conclusion, two of whom showed the initial signs of shedding within 3–4 weeks. Excellent durability of treatment response was reported in three participants.
Mean baseline scores in the Dermatology Life Quality Index was 6.5±5 points, which dropped to 5.2±6.7 at 3 months and to 6±6.9 points after the 6-month treatment regimen.
In terms of treatment safety, the most common adverse event was upper respiratory infections of any grade, reported in 91.6 percent (n=11) of the patients. This was followed by increased bowel movement frequency (33.3 percent; n=4) and blood on urinalysis (33.3 percent; n=4). One patient with a history of hypertension discontinued treatment due to hypertensive urgency.
For the study, treatment outcomes were measured using the Severity in Alopecia Tool score. Hair regrowth as a continuous variable was evaluated using Canfield photography.