A majority of African American patients with symptomatic sarcoidosis treated with Acthar Gel saw clinical improvement in a number of health factors, including lung function and quality of life, according to data presented at ATS 2022.

Sarcoidosis is a chronic condition that causes inflammation in the body and is experienced more commonly in African Americans, with the highest prevalence of sarcoidosis in African American women, researchers say.

Acthar Gel is a naturally sourced complex mixture of adrenocorticotropic hormone analogs and other pituitary peptides, approved for treatment of symptomatic sarcoidosis by the FDA.

The study, funded by Mallinckrodt plc, analyzed medical chart data from 168 African American patients (77 male and 91 female) with sarcoidosis who had completed a course of Acthar Gel or received Acthar Gel for at least six months. Patients had a mean of 5.2 years since initial diagnosis of sarcoidosis and 72% patients had at least one comorbidity. The mean duration of Acthar Gel treatment was 31.7 weeks and 62.5% patients continued Acthar Gel therapy for at least six months.

According to physicians’ assessments of change in patients’ health status after Acthar Gel therapy, 95% of patients (n=160) had improved and 49% of patients (n=83) had at least two types of improvements in sarcoidosis symptoms.

In addition, data showed a significant reduction in use of any co-medication with the number of patients who used glucocorticoids decreasing significantly from 59.5% during the three months before initiation of Acthar Gel to 11.9% three months after Acthar Gel therapy.

The most commonly reported types of sarcoidosis symptom improvements were:

  • 73% experienced improvements in overall symptoms (n=122)
  • 34% experienced improvements in inflammation (n=57
  • 32% experienced improvements in patient quality of life (n=53)
  • 30% experienced improvements in lung function (n=51)
  • 29% experienced a reduction or discontinuation of glucocorticoid (n=48).

“We believe the results of this retrospective medical chart review subgroup analysis support Acthar Gel’s role as a viable treatment option for African Americans with advanced symptomatic sarcoidosis and support the importance of continued collection of real-world data to help inform patients’ treatment options,” said George J. Wan, Ph.D., M.P.H., Vice President Health Economics and Outcomes Research at Mallinckrodt.  

“It’s critical that ongoing sarcoidosis research highlights the disparities that exist for African Americans with regards to diagnosis, severity of illness and response to treatments. More studies are required that deepen our understandings of these differences and provide meaningful strategies to improve outcomes among this community,” said Mary McGowan of The Foundation for Sarcoidosis Research (FSR).