VIENNA — In this exclusive video from the International Liver Congress 2019, Gideon M. Hirschfield, MD, from the Toronto Center for Liver Disease and the University of Toronto in Canada, discusses the long-term effects of Ocaliva in patients with primary biliary cholangitis on immune and inflammatory markers.
In the study Hirschfield presented this year, Ocaliva (obeticholic acid, Intercept) demonstrated not only improvements in markers of cholestasis but also improved markers of inflammation including C-reaction protein.
“Studies like this are very important as we develop new drugs for patients with PBC,” he said. “We’re looking for agents which are both anti-cholestatic, anti-inflammatory, and anti-fibrotic. We hope that our data, therefore, continues to advance our understanding of how these drugs are working.”
Hirschfield noted that this comes at a very important time for patients with PBC, since there are now two licensed therapies and further clinical trials are developing other agents that may be used alone or potentially in combination with obeticholic acid and ursodeoxycholic acid, “such that the new normal for our patients is going to be to expect not just an improvement in their liver tests but to move toward normalization of their liver tests.”
These data have impact for not only patients living with PBC but all patients living with rare liver disease because it “shows that for this group of diseases, although uncommon, you can develop drugs, you can get them licensed, and that can impact on our patients both in hopefully terms of quantity and quality of life,” Hirschfield said.
Reference: Hirschfield GM. FRI-026. Presented at: International Liver Congress; April 10-14, 2019; Vienna, Austria.
Disclosure: Hirschfield reports advisory committee or review panel roles with GlaxoSmithKline and Intercept; consulting roles with Cymbay and Novartis; and grant or research support from BioTie, Falk and Takeda.