EDP-305 in patients with NASH: A phase II double-blind placebo-controlled dose-ranging study

J Hepatol. 2022 Mar;76(3):506-517. doi: 10.1016/j.jhep.2021.10.018. Epub 2021 Nov 3.


Background & aims: EDP-305 is an oral farnesoid X receptor (FXR) agonist under development for the treatment of non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH). Herein, we aimed to assess the efficacy, safety and tolerability of EDP-305 in patients with fibrotic NASH.

Methods: In this double-blind phase II study, patients with fibrotic NASH (without cirrhosis), diagnosed by historical biopsy or phenotypically, were randomized to EDP-305 1 mg, EDP-305 2.5 mg, or placebo, for 12 weeks. The primary endpoint was mean change in alanine aminotransferase (ALT) from baseline to Week 12, and the key secondary endpoint was mean change in liver fat content from baseline to Week 12.

Results: Between January 2018 and July 2019, 134 patients were randomized and 132 were evaluated. At Week 12, the least squares mean reductions from baseline in ALT for patients receiving 2.5 mg EDP-305 and 1 mg EDP-305 were -27.9 U/L (95% CI 0.03 to 24.9; p = 0.049) and -21.7 U/L (-5.8 to 18.3: p = 0.304), respectively, compared to -15.4 U/L for those receiving placebo. Absolute liver fat reduction was -7.1% (2.0-7.5; p = 0.0009) with 2.5 mg EDP-305, -3.3% with EDP-305 1 mg, and -2.4% with placebo. The most common (≥5%) adverse events were pruritus, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, and dizziness. Pruritus occurred in 50.9%, 9.1%, and 4.2% of patients in the 2.5 mg, 1 mg, and placebo groups, respectively, and led to study drug discontinuation in 20.8% of patients in the 2.5 mg group and 1.8% in the 1 mg group.

Conclusions: EDP-305 reduced ALT levels and liver fat content, providing support for a longer-term trial assessing histological endpoints in patients with NASH. CLINICALTRIALS.

Gov number: NCT03421431 LAY SUMMARY: Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease is a chronic hepatic disease that can progress to non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH), which is associated with an increased risk of cirrhosis and liver cancer. Results from this phase II study support continued development of EDP-305, an oral farnesoid X receptor agonist, for the treatment of patients with NASH.

Keywords: alanine aminotransferase; clinical trial; farnesoid X receptor; fibrosis; proton density fat fraction; steatosis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Administration, Oral
  • Adult
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Canada
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug*
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Female
  • France
  • Germany
  • Humans
  • Liver / pathology
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • New Zealand
  • Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease / drug therapy*
  • Placebos
  • Receptors, Cytoplasmic and Nuclear / administration & dosage
  • Receptors, Cytoplasmic and Nuclear / therapeutic use
  • Steroids / administration & dosage*
  • Steroids / therapeutic use
  • Treatment Outcome
  • United Kingdom
  • United States


  • EDP-305
  • Placebos
  • Receptors, Cytoplasmic and Nuclear
  • Steroids
  • farnesoid X-activated receptor

Associated data

  • ClinicalTrials.gov/NCT03421431