Randomized, open-label, phase 2a study to evaluate the contribution of artefenomel to the clinical and parasiticidal activity of artefenomel plus ferroquine in African patients with uncomplicated Plasmodium falciparum malaria
The contribution of artefenomel to the clinical and parasiticidal activity of ferroquine and artefenomel in combination in uncomplicated Plasmodium falciparum malaria was investigated.
This Phase 2a, randomized, open-label, parallel-group study was conducted from 11th September 2018 to 6th November 2019 across seven centres in Benin, Burkina Faso, Gabon, Kenya, and Uganda. Patients aged ≥ 14-69 years with microscopically confirmed infection (≥ 3000 to ≤ 50,000 parasites/µL blood) were randomized 1:1:1:1 to 400 mg ferroquine, or 400 mg ferroquine plus artefenomel 300, 600, or 1000 mg, administered as a single oral dose. The primary efficacy analysis was a logistic regression evaluating the contribution of artefenomel exposure to Day 28 PCR-adjusted adequate clinical and parasitological response (ACPR). Safety was also evaluated.
The randomized population included 140 patients. For the primary analysis in the pharmacokinetic/pharmacodynamic efficacy population (N = 121), the contribution of artefenomel AUC to Day 28 PCR-adjusted ACPR was not demonstrated when accounting for ferroquine AUC, baseline parasitaemia, and other model covariates: odds ratio 1.1 (95% CI 0.98, 1.2; P = 0.245). In the per-protocol population, Day 28 PCR-adjusted ACPR was 80.8% (21/26; 95% CI 60.6, 93.4) with ferroquine alone and 90.3% (28/31; 95% CI 74.2, 98.0), 90.9% (30/33; 95% CI 75.7, 98.1) and 87.1% (27/31; 95% CI 70.2, 96.4) with 300, 600, and 1000 mg artefenomel, respectively. Median time to parasite clearance (Kaplan-Meier) was 56.1 h with ferroquine, more rapid with artefenomel, but similar for all doses (30.0 h). There were no deaths. Adverse events (AEs) of any cause occurred in 51.4% (18/35) of patients with ferroquine 400 mg alone, and 58.3% (21/36), 66.7% (24/36), and 72.7% (24/33) with 300, 600, and 1000 mg artefenomel, respectively. All AEs were of mild-to-moderate severity, and consistent with the known profiles of the compounds. Vomiting was the most reported AE. There were no cases of QTcF prolongation ≥ 500 ms or > 60 ms from baseline.
The contribution of artefenomel exposure to the clinical and parasitological activity of ferroquine/artefenomel could not be demonstrated in this study. Parasite clearance was faster with ferroquine/artefenomel versus ferroquine alone. All treatments were well tolerated.
ClinicalTrials.gov, NCT03660839 (7 September, 2018).
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