Gilead and Novo Nordisk Present New Data from Proof-of-Concept Trial in NASH
-- Results from First Phase 2 Trial Describing a Triple Combination Regimen Targeting NASH Presented at The Liver Meeting Digital Experience --
The trial met its primary endpoint by demonstrating that in people with NASH and mild to moderate fibrosis all regimens were well tolerated. The most common adverse events (AEs) were gastrointestinal. Minimal pruritus (itching) was observed in people treated with cilofexor. Across all groups, 5–14% of people discontinued any trial treatment due to AEs. Exploratory efficacy endpoints assessing biomarkers of liver health at 24 weeks in post-hoc analyses showed statistically significant improvements in hepatic steatosis (measured by magnetic resonance imaging proton density fat fraction; MRI-PDFF) and liver injury (measured by serum alanine aminotransferase; ALT) in the combination arms versus semaglutide alone. Although liver stiffness measured by vibration-controlled transient elastography (VCTE) and enhanced liver fibrosis (ELF) score declined in all groups, statistically significant differences between groups were not observed.
“These results offer novel insights around the multiple mechanisms that drive NASH and demonstrate the potential of combination approaches for patients in significant need of a treatment option for this condition,” said
“Gilead is focused on delivering scientific advances that can improve the lives of people with liver disease, both through our own innovation and in partnership with companies with complementary expertise, such as Novo Nordisk,” said
“This trial brings together Gilead and Novo Nordisk’s respective expertise and science to provide important insights into potential new combination therapies involving semaglutide to help people living with NASH,” said
The companies are also presenting preclinical data supporting the development of combination approaches in NASH. In the preclinical trial, semaglutide alone and in combination with cilofexor and/or GS-834356 (an analog of firsocostat) were administered daily for 12 weeks in a murine model of diet-induced NASH (n=15-16/group). The results demonstrated that while semaglutide significantly improved NASH and fibrosis-related endpoints, the addition of either cilofexor or the firsocostat analog further improved liver fat reduction. The combination of all three agents had the greatest impact on changes in the NAFLD Activity Score (NAS).
The safety and efficacy of firsocostat, GS-834356 and cilofexor have not been established. Firsocostat, GS-834356 and cilofexor are investigational compounds and are not approved by the FDA or any other regulatory authority. Semaglutide has not been approved by the FDA or any other regulatory authority for the treatment of people living with NASH, but has been approved for the treatment of type 2 diabetes.
NASH is a chronic and progressive liver disease characterized by fat accumulation and inflammation in the liver, which can lead to scarring, or fibrosis, that impairs liver function. The risk of progression to advanced liver disease, including liver decompensation (loss of liver function) and liver cancer, is higher in people with NASH than in the general population and NASH could become the leading reason for liver transplants in most countries. Currently, no pharmacotherapy is globally approved for the treatment of NASH, and people with NASH are left with very few management options.
Gilead Forward-Looking Statement
This press release includes forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 that are subject to risks, uncertainties and other factors, including the possibility of unfavorable results from ongoing and additional clinical trials involving cilofexor, firsocostat and GS-834356 and the possibility that Gilead may be unable to complete one or more of such trials in the currently anticipated timelines or at all. Further, it is possible that Gilead may make a strategic decision to discontinue development of cilofexor, firsocostat and GS-834356 and other investigational compounds, or that the parties may make a strategic decision to discontinue their collaboration at any time, and as a result, the compounds may never be successfully commercialized. All statements other than statements of historical fact are statements that could be deemed forward-looking statements. These risks, uncertainties and other factors could cause actual results to differ materially from those referred to in the forward-looking statements. The reader is cautioned not to rely on these forward-looking statements. These and other risks are described in detail in Gilead’s Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the quarter ended
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