CHMP Favors EU Approval of Inbrija to Treat Parkinson’s Off Periods

Patricia Inácio, PhD avatar

by Patricia Inácio, PhD |

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The Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use (CHMP) — an arm of the European Medicines Agency (EMA) — is recommending that Inbrija, by Acorda Therapeutics, be approved to treat off periods in Parkinson’s patients on a carbidopa/levodopa regimen.

The European Commission will review CHMP’s positive opinion, with a decision expected before year’s end.

“We are delighted that Inbrija has achieved this important milestone, and look forward to the EC’s final decision later this year. There are approximately 1.2 million people in the EU living with Parkinson’s. We estimate that 40% of these individuals experience off periods, which are considered extremely disruptive,” Ron Cohen, MD, president and CEO of Acorda, said in a press release.

Inbrija is a self-administered, inhaled formulation of levodopa developed to treat off episodes. These periods, when levopoda wears off before a new dose can be taken, are characterized by the re-emergence of Parkinson’s motor symptoms, and are typically more common as the disease progresses.

Inbrija delivers a precise dose of levodopa to patients’ brains that, because it is inhaled, bypasses the need to be absorbed in the digestive system. As such, it can deliver a higher and more consistent levodopa dose to the brain.

Inbrija is approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to treat Parkinson’s symptoms during off episodes. 

CHMP’s decision was based on clinical data from the Phase 3 SPAN-PD clinical trial (NCT02240030). The study evaluated the safety and effectiveness of two doses of Inbrija — 84 mg and 60 mg — or a placebo taken up to five times a day in 351 Parkinson’s patients experiencing off periods. Treatment was maintained for 12 weeks.

Results showed that Inbrija significantly improved patients’ motor function compared to placebo. Researchers found no safety concerns. The most common adverse events were cough, upper respiratory tract infection, and throat irritation.

Trial outcomes were published in The Lancet Neurology, in the study “Safety and efficacy of CVT-301 (levodopa inhalation powder) on motor function during off periods in patients with Parkinson’s disease: a randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled phase 3 trial.”

Inbrija was also studied in two long-term Phase 3 trials — the CVT-301-005 trial (NCT02352363) and the CVT-301-004E study (NCT02242487) – that evaluated Inbrija used up to five times daily for 12 months.

Researchers found no changes in treated patients’ lung function compared with standard levodopa treatment, supporting Inbrija’s safety as an off-period medication.

Efficacy data from the CVT-301-005 trial also confirmed that Inbrija eases problems with motor function that emerge in off periods. Treatment was found to enable symptom control within 60 minutes of the dose and lowered the length of patients’ off times.

Acorda’s European application covers all European Union countries, as well as Norway, Liechtenstein, and Iceland.