SOURCE: International Society for Heart and Lung Transplantation

International Society for Heart and Lung Transplantation

April 18, 2015 04:40 ET

Longterm, Multicenter, Multinational Data in Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension Presented at ISHLT Meeting

NICE, FRANCE--(Marketwired - April 18, 2015) - Today at the 35th Annual International Society for Heart and Lung Transplantation (ISHLT) Meeting & Scientific Sessions, researchers presented long-term results from The GRIPHON trial demonstrating that selexipag (Uptravi®) is an effective treatment therapy for pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH). The trial, a multicenter, multinational, double-blind, placebo-controlled study, evaluated the effect for selexipag on morbidity/mortality (M/M) as well as tolerability and safety with patients with PAH, a type of high blood pressure that constructs the pulmonary arteries and gets worse over time. The results indicated that the drug treatment of selexipag improved the long-term outcomes of a patient with PAH. 

The data gathered from the GRIPHON study tested 1,156 patients with PAH. Patients were treated up to 4.3 years. The results showed that patients taking selexipag reduced the risk of M/M events compared to placebo patients by 40 percent. Interestingly, the treatment was effective across age and gender.

"The GRIPHON study is indeed a groundbreaking step forward in pulmonary hypertension," said Andreas Zuckermann, MD, ISHLT 2015 Scientific Program Committee Chair. "ISHLT has a profound interest in these results as pulmonary hypertension is one of the key areas the society is concentrating on in the future."

Selexipag targets the prostacyclin pathway, which is one of the three essential pathways involved in the pathophysiology and treatment of PAH. Prostacyclin is a prostanoid and serves as a signaling molecule in the body.

PULMONARY ARTERIAL HYPERTENSION (PAH)

PAH is a chronic, life-threatening disorder characterized by abnormally high blood pressure in the arteries between the heart and lungs of an affected individual. The symptoms of PAH are non-specific and can range from mild breathlessness and fatigue during normal daily activity to symptoms of right heart failure and severe restrictions on exercise capacity and ultimately reduced life expectancy. PAH is one group within the classification of pulmonary hypertension (PH).

The last decade has seen significant advances in the understanding of the pathophysiology of PAH, which has been paralleled with developments of treatment guidelines and new therapies. Drugs targeting the three pathways that have been established in the pathogenesis of PAH are endothelin receptor antagonists (ERAs), prostacyclin analogs and phosphodiesterase-5 inhibitors.

PAH treatments have transformed the prognosis for PAH patients from symptomatic improvements in exercise tolerance 10 years ago to delayed disease progression today. Improved disease awareness and evidence-based guidelines developed from randomized controlled clinical trial data have highlighted the need for early intervention, goal-oriented treatment and combination therapy.

The International Society for Heart and Lung Transplantation (ISHLT) is a not-for-profit professional organization with more than 2,700 members from over 45 countries dedicated to improving the care of patients with advanced heart or lung disease through transplantation, mechanical support and innovative therapies via research, education and advocacy. For more information, visit www.ishlt.org.

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