Two Phase 3 Trials of Lebrikizumab for Moderate-to-Severe Atopic Dermatitis

N Engl J Med. 2023 Mar 23;388(12):1080-1091. doi: 10.1056/NEJMoa2206714. Epub 2023 Mar 15.


Background: Lebrikizumab, a high-affinity IgG4 monoclonal antibody targeting interleukin-13, prevents the formation of the interleukin-4Rα-interleukin-13Rα1 heterodimer receptor signaling complex.

Methods: We conducted two identically designed, 52-week, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, phase 3 trials; both trials included a 16-week induction period and a 36-week maintenance period. Eligible patients with moderate-to-severe atopic dermatitis (adults [≥18 years of age] and adolescents [12 to <18 years of age, weighing ≥40 kg]) were randomly assigned in a 2:1 ratio to receive either lebrikizumab at a dose of 250 mg (loading dose of 500 mg at baseline and week 2) or placebo, administered subcutaneously every 2 weeks. Outcomes for the induction period were assessed up to 16 weeks and are included in this report. The primary outcome was an Investigator's Global Assessment (IGA) score of 0 or 1 (indicating clear or almost clear skin; range, 0 to 4 [severe disease]) with a reduction (indicating improvement) of at least 2 points from baseline at week 16. Secondary outcomes included a 75% improvement in the Eczema Area and Severity Index score (EASI-75 response) and assessments of itch and of itch interference with sleep. Safety was also assessed.

Results: In trial 1, the primary outcome was met in 43.1% of 283 patients in the lebrikizumab group and in 12.7% of 141 patients in the placebo group (P<0.001); an EASI-75 response occurred in 58.8% and 16.2%, respectively (P<0.001). In trial 2, the primary outcome was met in 33.2% of 281 patients in the lebrikizumab group and in 10.8% of 146 patients in the placebo group (P<0.001); an EASI-75 response occurred in 52.1% and 18.1%, respectively (P<0.001). Measures of itch and itch interference with sleep indicated improvement with lebrikizumab therapy. The incidence of conjunctivitis was higher among patients who received lebrikizumab than among those who received placebo. Most adverse events during the induction period were mild or moderate in severity and did not lead to trial discontinuation.

Conclusions: In the induction period of two phase 3 trials, 16 weeks of treatment with lebrikizumab was effective in adolescents and adults with moderate-to-severe atopic dermatitis. (Funded by Dermira; ADvocate1 and ADvocate2 numbers, NCT04146363 and NCT04178967, respectively.).

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Clinical Trial, Phase III

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal* / adverse effects
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal* / immunology
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal* / therapeutic use
  • Dermatitis, Atopic* / complications
  • Dermatitis, Atopic* / drug therapy
  • Dermatitis, Atopic* / immunology
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Humans
  • Immunoglobulin G / immunology
  • Infant
  • Interleukin-13 / antagonists & inhibitors
  • Interleukin-13 / immunology
  • Pruritus / drug therapy
  • Pruritus / etiology
  • Pruritus / immunology
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Skin / drug effects
  • Skin / immunology
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Antibodies, Monoclonal
  • Interleukin-13
  • lebrikizumab
  • Immunoglobulin G

Associated data