Practical Management of the JAK1 Inhibitor Abrocitinib for Atopic Dermatitis in Clinical Practice: Special Safety Considerations

Dermatol Ther (Heidelb). 2024 Jul 2. doi: 10.1007/s13555-024-01200-5. Online ahead of print.


Abrocitinib, an oral, once-daily, Janus kinase (JAK) 1-selective inhibitor, is approved for the treatment of adults and adolescents with moderate-to-severe atopic dermatitis (AD). Abrocitinib has shown rapid and sustained efficacy in phase 3 trials and a consistent, manageable safety profile in long-term studies. Rapid itch relief and skin clearance are more likely to be achieved with a 200-mg daily dose of abrocitinib than with dupilumab. All oral JAK inhibitors are associated with adverse events of special interest and laboratory changes, and initial risk assessment and follow-up monitoring are important. Appropriate selection of patients and adequate monitoring are key for the safe use of JAK inhibitors. Here, we review the practical use of abrocitinib and discuss characteristics of patients who are candidates for abrocitinib therapy. In general, abrocitinib may be used in all appropriate patients with moderate-to-severe AD in need of systemic therapy, provided there are no contraindications, e.g., in patients with active serious systemic infections and those with severe hepatic impairment, as well as pregnant or breastfeeding women. For patients aged ≥ 65 years, current long-time or past long-time smokers, and those with risk factors for venous thromboembolism, major adverse cardiovascular events, or malignancies, a meticulous benefit-risk assessment is recommended, and it is advised to start with the 100-mg dose, when abrocitinib is the selected treatment option.

Keywords: Abrocitinib; Atopic dermatitis; JAK1-selective inhibitor; Monitoring; Safety.