We're building a better ClinicalTrials.gov. Check it out and tell us what you think!
ClinicalTrials.gov Menu

Evaluating Sirolimus to Treat Autoimmune Blistering Dermatosis Pemphigus

The safety and scientific validity of this study is the responsibility of the study sponsor and investigators. Listing a study does not mean it has been evaluated by the U.S. Federal Government. Read our disclaimer for details.
ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT01313923
Recruitment Status : Terminated (Lack of funding)
First Posted : March 14, 2011
Results First Posted : March 25, 2016
Last Update Posted : June 9, 2017
Information provided by (Responsible Party):
Sergei Grando, University of California, Irvine

Brief Summary:
The purpose of this research is to study alternative treatments for the skin disease pemphigus (a rare autoimmune blistering disorder of the skin) by using sirolimus, an immunosuppressive drug. Immunosuppressive drugs inhibit or prevent the activity of the immune system and are commonly used to treat autoimmune diseases, inflammatory diseases, and organ transplantation rejection.

Condition or disease Intervention/treatment Phase
Pemphigus Drug: Sirolimus (formerly known as Rapamycin) Early Phase 1

Detailed Description:

The purpose of this study is to explore a new medication for the skin disease termed pemphigus. Our specific aim is to determine whether the use of sirolimus will allow for a decrease in the dosage or possibly eliminate the need for corticosteroids, which so far is the only type of drug that can control this disease.

Pemphigus is an autoimmune disease characterized by blistering, caused by autoantibodies against certain cells in the skin. This disease most commonly occurs in individuals ages 50 and older, and it presents as painful shallow erosions and/or blisters in the mouth and/or skin. Pemphigus is very painful and uncomfortable, associated with impaired quality of life and significant morbidity. Severe or untreated cases of pemphigus can become fatal if the involved surface area becomes large enough to cause dehydration and/or infection. The first line of therapy, and the standard of care, for pemphigus remain to be systemic corticosteroids. However, corticosteroids have many known side effects, especially when used for a long time. Many cases of pemphigus are insufficiently controlled with corticosteroids alone and require the addition of other immunosuppressive agents, such as azathioprine, cyclophosphamide, mycophenolate mofetil, or a variety of other therapies used off-label. All of these treatments are not always successful and have undesirable side effects, including increased risk of malignancy and infections. Although these treatments can offer some relief from the disease, they are also often the cause of many side effects.

Sirolimus (formerly known as rapamycin) is a drug commonly used after renal transplants to prevent organ rejection. In this study, pemphigus subjects with active disease will begin taking sirolimus in conjunction with corticosteroids, using a similar regimen used for organ transplantation to treat pemphigus. While increasing sirolimus and decreasing the corticosteroids, subjects will be monitored over a 12 month period to evaluate their disease response. The purpose of this study is to observe data trends.

Our specific aim is to determine whether the use of sirolimus will allow for a decrease in the dosage of the corticosteroid prednisone, which so far is the only type of drugs that can control these diseases, without making the pemphigus worse.

Layout table for study information
Study Type : Interventional  (Clinical Trial)
Actual Enrollment : 3 participants
Allocation: N/A
Intervention Model: Single Group Assignment
Masking: None (Open Label)
Primary Purpose: Treatment
Official Title: Evaluation of Sirolimus for the Treatment of the Autoimmune Blistering Dermatosis Pemphigus
Study Start Date : February 2011
Actual Primary Completion Date : October 2014
Actual Study Completion Date : October 2014

Resource links provided by the National Library of Medicine

Arm Intervention/treatment
Experimental: Sirolimus (formerly known as Rapamycin)
Subjects with stable pemphigus vulgaris already on treatment with prednisone will be enrolled. Subjects will start taking oral sirolimus and have it up-titrated while decreasing the prednisone dosage. Their disease state will be monitored during this time.
Drug: Sirolimus (formerly known as Rapamycin)
For low to moderate immunologic risk, the loading dose is 6mg immediately after transplantation, followed by 2mg PO Qday in conjunction with cyclosporine and corticosteroids. After 2-4 months, cyclosporine should be discontinued over 4-8 weeks while titrating sirolimus drug concentrations within the target-range with whole blood trough concentrations every 1-2 weeks. Monitoring is needed because cyclosporine inhibits the metabolism of sirolimus, and discontinuation of cyclosporine can lead to lower levels of sirolimus. In high immunologic risk patients, the loading dose is 15mg after transplantation, followed by 5mg PO Qday in conjunction with cyclosporine and corticosteroids for 12 months. A whole blood trough level is recommended between days 5 and 7 with adjustment to the daily dose.
Other Names:
  • Sirolimus
  • Rapamycin

Primary Outcome Measures :
  1. Improvement of ABSIS Score While Reducing Steroid Dosage [ Time Frame: Expected time line 24 months ]

    Measurement of disease severity will be quantified using ABSIS (Autoimmune Bullous Skin Disorder Intensity Score). Improvement in disease control is quantified by the maintenance or improvement of ABSIS score while reducing steroid dosage.

    No results as study has been terminated early by the investigator.

Secondary Outcome Measures :
  1. Statistical Measures [ Time Frame: Study early termination by investigator - no participant completed any visits of the study - no measurements taken ]
    The statistical goal is to observe "success," an improvement in disease control while up-titrating sirolimus dosage. As there will be no control group, the subject or progress at the end of the study will be compared to their baseline at the beginning of the study. The subject and disease severity at the beginning of the study will be compared to the disease severity at each visit and be correlated with the dosage of sirolimus and corticosteroid. However, since no patient completed the study, the outcome and any data collected was not assessed.

Information from the National Library of Medicine

Choosing to participate in a study is an important personal decision. Talk with your doctor and family members or friends about deciding to join a study. To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the contacts provided below. For general information, Learn About Clinical Studies.

Layout table for eligibility information
Ages Eligible for Study:   18 Years and older   (Adult, Older Adult)
Sexes Eligible for Study:   All
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   No

Inclusion Criteria:

  1. Subject must be 18 years of age or older.
  2. Subject must have an established diagnosis of pemphigus disorder via biopsy and/or serologic titer, as determined appropriate by the lead researcher.
  3. Subject must have active disease at the time of enrollment, as defined by a positive Nikolsky sign.
  4. Subject must not be taking any immunosuppressive medication or therapy other than corticosteroids.
  5. Subject must be able to understand and follow directions.
  6. If female, subject is not currently breast feeding and/or pregnant as confirmed via negative pregnancy test, no potential for pregnancy, or if of child-bearing age, agrees to using birth control for entire duration of study and 12 weeks after end of study.

Exclusion Criteria:

  1. Subject may not be under 18 years old.
  2. Subject cannot understand or follow directions.
  3. Subject may not have any condition that could, in the opinion of the investigator, compromise the subject's ability to give written consent and/or comply with the study procedures, such as a history of substance abuse or a psychiatric condition.
  4. If female and of child bearing age, is pregnant or unwilling to use birth control during the study period.
  5. Subject may not have any of the following laboratory abnormalities at baseline:

    • total white blood cell count < 2,000/mm3 or platelet count < 100,000/mm3
    • creatinine >1.5mg/dL
    • urine analysis protein of 2+ or greater
    • fasting triglycerides > 400 mg/dL, fasting total cholesterol > 300 mg/dL, or fasting LDLcholesterol > 160 mg/dL
    • transaminases > 2 times the upper limit of normal
  6. Subjects may not be using any of the following medications: systemic antifungals, antiepileptics, HIV protease inhibitors, cimetidine, cisapride, clarithromycin, danazol, diltiazem, erythromycin, metoclopramide, rifabutin, rifampin, rifapentine, troleandomycin, or verapamil
  7. Subject may not consume grapefruit juice and/or St. John's Wort (hypericum perforatum) throughout the duration of the study.
  8. Subject may not have other significant concurrent medical conditions, including

    • Active malignancy, including evidence of cutaneous basal or squamous cell carcinoma or melanoma, or history of cancer (other than fully resected and surgically cured cutaneous basal cell and squamous cell carcinoma) within 5 years before the first 13 of 25 sirolimus dose. If malignancy occurred more than 5 years ago, documentation of disease-free state since treatment is required.
    • Known immunodeficiency syndromes, including HIV
    • Renal failure or insufficiency, as defined by laboratory parameters above
    • Significant proteinuria, as defined by laboratory parameters above
    • History of high cholesterol, lipids, or liver disease, as defined by laboratory parameters above
    • Uncontrolled hypertension, as defined by a blood pressure > 140/90 despite optimal medical therapy, as prescribed by primary care doctor
    • Any condition that, in the opinion of the investigator, might cause this study to be detrimental to the subject
    • Any active Common Terminology Criteria (CTC) grade 2 (localized infection; requiring local intervention) or higher infection (including chronic or localized infections) within 30 days prior to screening, at screening, or during screening period prior to first dose of sirolimus

Information from the National Library of Medicine

To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the contact information provided by the sponsor.

Please refer to this study by its ClinicalTrials.gov identifier (NCT number): NCT01313923

Layout table for location information
United States, California
University of California, Irvine
Irvine, California, United States, 92697
Sponsors and Collaborators
University of California, Irvine
Layout table for investigator information
Principal Investigator: Sergei Grando, MD, PhD University of California, Irvine
Layout table for additonal information
Responsible Party: Sergei Grando, MD, PhD, University of California, Irvine
ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT01313923    
Other Study ID Numbers: 2010-7844
First Posted: March 14, 2011    Key Record Dates
Results First Posted: March 25, 2016
Last Update Posted: June 9, 2017
Last Verified: May 2017
Keywords provided by Sergei Grando, University of California, Irvine:
Additional relevant MeSH terms:
Layout table for MeSH terms
Skin Diseases
Skin Diseases, Vesiculobullous
Autoimmune Diseases
Immune System Diseases
Anti-Bacterial Agents
Anti-Infective Agents
Antibiotics, Antineoplastic
Antineoplastic Agents
Antifungal Agents
Immunosuppressive Agents
Immunologic Factors
Physiological Effects of Drugs