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Is Deucravacitinib Better Than Placebo, Apremilast for Scalp Psoriasis?

Deucravacitinib more efficacious for improving moderate-to-severe scalp psoriasis, and is well tolerated

By Dermsquared Editorial Team | December 27, 2023

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 27, 2023 -- For moderate-to-severe scalp psoriasis, deucravacitinib is more efficacious than placebo or apremilast, according to a study published online Dec. 18 in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology.

Andrew Blauvelt, M.D., from the Oregon Medical Research Center in Portland, and colleagues examined the efficacy and safety of deucravacitinib in scalp psoriasis in two global phase 3 52-week double-blinded trials involving adults with moderate-to-severe psoriasis. A total of 1,084 patients with moderate-to-severe scalp psoriasis at baseline were randomly assigned to oral placebo, deucravacitinib 6 mg once a day, or apremilast 30 mg twice a day in a 1:2:1 ratio.

The researchers found that compared with placebo or apremilast, response rates were greater with deucravacitinib at week 16 for a scalp-specific Physician Global Assessment score of 0 or 1 (64.0 versus 17.3 versus 37.7 percent), ≥90 percent improvement in the Psoriasis Scalp Severity Index (PSSI; 50.6 versus 10.5 versus 26.1 percent), and change from baseline in PSSI. With continuous deucravacitinib, responses were maintained through 52 weeks. Consistent safety was seen with the entire study population.

"Efficacy in scalp psoriasis with deucravacitinib was superior to placebo and apremilast regardless of baseline body weight, body mass index, or prior antipsoriatic treatment, and efficacy was maintained through 52 weeks in patients who received continuous deucravacitinib treatment," the authors write.

Several authors disclosed ties to pharmaceutical companies, including Bristol Myers Squibb, which manufactures deucravacitinib and funded the study.


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