Secukinumab responses vary across the spectrum of congenital ichthyosis in adults

Arch Dermatol Res. 2023 Mar;315(2):305-315. doi: 10.1007/s00403-022-02325-3. Epub 2022 Feb 26.


Importance: Treatment of congenital ichthyoses primarily focuses on reversing skin scaling and is not pathogenesis based. Recent studies showed Th17 immune skewing, as in psoriasis, across the spectrum of ichthyosis, suggesting that targeting this pathway might broadly reduce disease severity.

Objective: To determine whether secukinumab, an IL-17A inhibitor, can improve ichthyosis across several congenital ichthyosis subtypes.

Design: Exploratory 16-week double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled trial comparing secukinumab 300 mg every 4wks to placebo (1:1 randomization) in adults with the four major congenital ichthyosis subtypes (NCT03041038), followed by a 16-week open-label phase to evaluate response of the placebo-first group and a 20-week extension for safety. Significant differences in secukinumab- vs. placebo-treated subjects at Wk16 in the Ichthyosis Area Severity Index (IASI) score and lack of increased mucocutaneous bacterial and/or fungal infections were the co-primary efficacy and safety endpoints, respectively.

Setting: Two tertiary referral centers: Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, Chicago, and Mount Sinai Icahn School of Medicine, New York.

Participants: Twenty subjects ≥ 18 yo with genotype-confirmed epidermolytic ichthyosis, Netherton syndrome, lamellar ichthyosis, or congenital ichthyosiform erythroderma with at least moderate erythroderma.

Results: IL-17A inhibition did not significantly reduce severity or increase mucocutaneous infections among the 18 who completed the 16-week double-blind phase. Five patients with 29-50% clinical improvement at Wk32 requested drug continuation. Th17-related biomarkers were not significantly reduced vs. baseline or placebo-treated levels.

Limitations: Small sample size; heterogeneous ichthyosis subsets.

Conclusion: IL-17 inhibition with secukinumab is safe, but not efficacious across the spectrum of adult ichthyoses.

Gov registration number: NCT03041038; first posted on 02/02/2017.

Keywords: Biologic; IL-17; Ichthyosis; Monoclonal antibody; Secukinumab.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal / therapeutic use
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Humans
  • Ichthyosiform Erythroderma, Congenital* / drug therapy
  • Ichthyosis* / drug therapy
  • Ichthyosis, Lamellar* / drug therapy
  • Interleukin-17
  • Psoriasis* / drug therapy
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Treatment Outcome


  • secukinumab
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal
  • Interleukin-17

Associated data