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. 2018 Aug 22;14:1489-1497.
doi: 10.2147/TCRM.S177127. eCollection 2018.

Targeting p19 as a Treatment Option for Psoriasis: An Evidence-Based Review of Guselkumab

Free PMC article

Targeting p19 as a Treatment Option for Psoriasis: An Evidence-Based Review of Guselkumab

Todd Wechter et al. Ther Clin Risk Manag. .
Free PMC article


Further understanding of psoriasis pathogenesis has led to the development of effective biologic medications. Guselkumab (GUS) is a subcutaneously administered monoclonal antibody that targets the p19 cytokine subunit in IL-23 and IL-39 and is US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved for the treatment of moderate-to-severe psoriasis in adult patients. This review evaluates the pharmacology, safety and efficacy of GUS in patients with psoriasis. We performed a literature review by searching online databases including PubMed and Google Scholar. In clinical trials, GUS improved diseases including psoriatic arthritis (PsA) and specific areas of disease (scalp, feet, hands and fingernails). In the Phase III trials VOYAGE 1 and 2, more GUS than adalimumab (ADM) patients experienced a ≥90% reduction in Psoriasis Area and Severity Index (PASI) score (PASI90) (VOYAGE 1: 80.2% vs 53.0%; VOYAGE 2: 75.2% vs 54.8%; P<0.001 for both) and Investigator Global Assessment score of 0 or 1 (VOYAGE 1: 84.2% vs 61.7%; VOAYGE 2: 83.5% vs 64.9%; P<0.001 for both) at Week 24. GUS was also successful in treating patients unresponsive to ADM and ustekinumab in the VOYAGE 2 and NAVIGATE trials, respectively. While long-term data are necessary, GUS appears to have a favorable side effect profile with most common adverse effects including nasopharyngitis and upper respiratory tract infections. GUS is a well-tolerated and effective medication for patients with psoriasis. Continued study of GUS and the p19 subunit will help to determine GUS's ultimate place in therapy.

Keywords: IL-23; IL-39; biologics; monoclonal antibody.

Conflict of interest statement

Disclosure Dr Feldman has received research, speaking and/or consulting support from Galderma, GSK/Stiefel, Almirall, LEO Pharma, Boehringer Ingelheim, Mylan, Celgene, Pfizer, Valeant, AbbVie, Samsung, Janssen, Lilly, Menlo, Merck, Novartis, Regeneron, Sanofi, Novan, Qurient, National Biological Corporation, Caremark, Advance Medical, Sun Pharma, Suncare Research, Informa, UpToDate and National Psoriasis Foundation. The authors report no other conflicts of interest in this work.


Figure 1
Figure 1
IL-12, IL-23 and IL-39 with their receptors and downstream effects. Notes: IL-12 and IL-23 share the p40 cytokine subunit, which USM targets. IL-23 and IL-39 share the p19 cytokine subunit, which GUS, risankizumab and tildrakizumab target. IL-12 promotes the Th1 pathway, and IL-23 promotes the Th17 pathway. Abbreviations: USM, ustekinumab; GUS, guselkumab; ADM, adalimumab.

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