August 17, 2022


We Know Our Fitness

Results from the SKYLARK Study

4 min read
Results from the SKYLARK Study

In 2019, the Food stuff and Drug Administration (Fda) accepted brexanolone, marketed by Sage Therapeutics as Zulresso, as a treatment method for postpartum melancholy (PPD).  As a neurosteroid, brexanolone represents a novel strategy to the remedy of postpartum mood issues.  Just one of the most interesting issues about brexanolone is the rapidity of the response, with the preliminary reports indicating remission of depression inside 24 to 48 hrs.  For the reason that antidepressants usually acquire 2-4 weeks to kick in, an antidepressant agent with speedy onset of motion would be specially attractive to girls with intense PPD.  

A person of the significant disadvanges, nevertheless, is that Zulresso need to be administered intravenously above 60 several hours, which suggests that people should be hospitalized for about three days. In addition, Zulresso may possibly have most likely serious side results, including extreme sedation and sudden decline of consciousness as a result the Fda necessitates a REMS (Danger Evaluation and Mitigation Method) for healthcare facilities looking for to administer Zulresso.  In accordance to the REMS, sufferers need to be beneath 24-hour supervision with checking by an on-website professional medical specialist.  Given these constraints, the rollout of Zulresso has been sluggish.  

But we could quickly have accessibility to yet another selection for the remedy of PPD:  zuranolone.  Like brexanolone, zuranolone is a neurosteroid, an analogue of allopregnanolone which is a constructive allosteric modulator of the GABA-A receptor. What distinguishes zuranolone from brexanolone is that it has substantially much better oral bioavailability and hence does not have to be administered intravenously. It can be taken as an oral medicine, related to regular antidepressants.  

Results from the SKYLARK Study

Right now Sage Therapeutics, Inc. and Biogen Inc. introduced info from the Stage 3 SKYLARK Examine of zuranolone being evaluated in gals with postpartum depression.  The SKYLARK Examine was a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study assessing the efficacy and safety of zuranolone 50 mg. Girls with PPD (concerning the ages of 18 and 45) had been eligible for the analyze if they were less than 6 months postpartum and had a significant depressive episode commencing for the duration of the 3rd trimester or in advance of 4 weeks postpartum.  This analyze incorporated only gals with critical PPD, defined as a baseline 17-item Hamilton Score Scale for Despair (HAMD-17) rating of 26 or higher. Members (n=200) were being randomized to obtain possibly placebo or zuranolone (50 mg) administered orally every single night for 2 weeks.  The research inhabitants included approximately 22% Black or African American women of all ages and 38% Hispanic or Latina ladies.

A total of 200 patients were being randomized. By working day 3, women obtaining zuranolone skilled a bigger reduction in HAM-D scores than females acquiring placebo (suggest reduction, 9.5 vs 6.1 P = .0008).  The difference in mean HAM-D scores steadily amplified up to working day 15. At day 15, the signify reduction in HAM-D scores was 15.6 in gals acquiring zuranolone vs. 11.6 in the placebo group (change -4. P = .0007).  

At day 45, females taken care of with zuranolone ongoing to present a better reduction in HAM-D scores than girls getting placebo (-17.9 vs -14.4, P = .0067). 

Zuranolone 50 mg was generally properly-tolerated the the greater part of adverse gatherings were being moderate to moderate in severity. The most widespread adverse events were somnolence, dizziness, sedation, headache, diarrhea, nausea, urinary tract infection and COVID-19.  No proof of withdrawal indications as assessed utilizing the 20-merchandise Physician Withdrawal Checklist.

There was no indication of an boost in suicidal ideation or suicidal actions in excess of baseline, as calculated with the Columbia Suicide Severity Score Scale (C-SSRS).

Wanting Ahead

The existing review indicates that zuranolone has antidepressant results in women with intense PPD.  Advancements in despair had been observed at working day 3 and advancements perished about the 45 times of the study.  

Adverse events were mild to moderate in severity.  Mainly because of issues about  severe adverse situations in gals acquiring brexanolone (suicidal ideation following the infusion in a person topic and syncope/altered consciousness in an additional affected individual), Zulresso was permitted with a Possibility Analysis and Mitigation Technique (REMS).  It would seem unlikely that zuranolone will demand a REMS.

Sage Therapeutics and Biogen have initiated a submission of a New Drug Software (NDA) to the U.S. Foods and Drug Administration for zuranolone in the cure of major depressive diosrder and strategy to full the MDD NDA filing in the next 50 percent of 2022. A separate NDA filing for zuranolone as a procedure of PPD will be submitted in early 2023.

Ruta Nonacs, MD PhD

Sage Therapeutics and Biogen Announce that the Phase 3 SKYLARK Study of Zuranolone in Postpartum Melancholy Satisfied its Key and All Important Secondary Endpoints (Press Launch)




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