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South Korea Study Delves Into Safety Insights for JAK Inhibitors for Atopic Dermatitis


Pusan National University published the review in light of the growing body of JAK inhibitors in the AD space.

sinhyu/Adobe Stock
sinhyu/Adobe Stock

In a recent review, researchers from Pusan National University in South Korea conducted a comprehensive safety analysis of Janus kinase (JAK) inhibitors and their role in atopic dermatitis (AD) treatment and management.

Though the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved 10 JAK inhibitors for various conditions, including AD, an FDA boxed warning accompanies these drugs with potential major adverse events. Recognizing the need for more extensive review of these adverse events, the research team, led by Associate Professor Yun Hak Kim, assessed randomized controlled trials involving the use of JAK inhibitors in AD patients. They noted that while many studies have examined the relationship between JAK inhibitors and safety signals, many have included limitations.

Published in the Journal of the European Academy of Dermatology & Venereology, the systematic review and meta-analysis delved into adverse event occurrences related to JAK inhibitor use. Analyzing data from 14 randomized controlled trials published between 2019 and 2022, the researchers identified an increased relative risk of herpes zoster, headache, acne, elevated blood creatinine phosphokinase, and nausea among AD patients treated with JAK inhibitors.

Contrary to concerns about malignancy and cardiovascular events, the study found no significant overall risk increase in patients with AD using JAK inhibitors. Addressing potential concerns, Professor Kim emphasized the importance of understanding and managing common adverse events, particularly headache, acne, and nausea.

Furthermore, the analysis pinpointed a higher risk of acne associated with upadacitinib and abrocitinib, with a dose-dependent increase. Elevated blood pressure was also linked to higher JAK inhibitor doses.

These findings underscore the need for nuanced understanding of JAK inhibitor safety for informed decision-making in AD management, with a focus on prolonged observations of major cardiovascular events, study authors wrote.

"The comprehensive safety analysis revealed that, contrary to concerns regarding malignancy, venous thromboembolism, and major adverse cardiac events, use of JAK inhibitors was not associated with a significant increase in the overall risk in patients with AD," said Professor Kim in a press release. "Therefore, we believe that understanding and managing common adverse events is the need of the hour, particularly those like headache, acne, and nausea, among others."


(PNU) PNU. Pusan National University researchers dive deep into the safety of jak inhibitors for atopic dermatitis. PR Newswire: press release distribution, targeting, monitoring and marketing. December 15, 2023. Accessed December 18, 2023. https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/pusan-national-university-researchers-dive-deep-into-the-safety-of-jak-inhibitors-for-atopic-dermatitis-302016476.html#:~:text=%22The%20comprehensive%20safety%20analysis%20revealed,risk%20in%20patients%20with%20AD

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