Significant Market Opportunity Awaits Therapies Offering Improvements in Efficacy over IV Belimumab for the Moderate to Severe Patient Segment
Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is a complex autoimmune disease affecting multiple organ systems, manifesting at various levels of severity, and involving periods of remission and relapse. The autoimmune reactions that characterize SLE can result in severe organ damage and, in some instances, ultimately lead to death. In 2011, IV belimumab (GlaxoSmithKline’s Benlysta) became the first drug approved for SLE in more than 50 years, highlighting the difficulty of successfully bringing to market agents to treat this multifactorial disease. Several biological therapies are in late-stage development for SLE, but based on the most recently reported trial data, significant opportunity remains for drugs that reliably reduce disease activity and corticosteroid use.