A new treatment for acromegaly has recently become available for patients. Called MYCAPSSA, this delayed-release capsule is intended for long term maintenance of acromegaly. Considering that injections are the typical method of administration for treatment, this new option is a big deal. It means that affected individuals have an easier and less painful method of treatment.
Acromegaly is a hormonal disorder that is characterized by an excess of growth hormone. This results in abnormal growth. As the symptoms progress slowly, it may not be noticeable at first, but the appendages will begin to grow and be disproportionate to the rest of the body. Facial features will also enlarge, as can the organs. Excessive sweating and thick, oily skin are also symptoms of this disorder. All of these effects occur due to benign tumors on the pituitary gland, which overproduce growth hormone. Surgery can be used to remove these tumors, which is usually the first treatment option. If it is not an option, doctors will prescribe medications like somatostatin analogs (SSAs), GH receptor antagonists (GHRAs), and dopamine agonists.
MYCAPSSA for Acromegaly
MYCAPSSA is a delayed-release capsule form of octreotide; it heavily inhibits growth hormone. It is intended for the long-term maintenance of the disorder for patients who have already responded to octreotide or lanreotide.
As octreotide is typically administered via injection, with needles that can be up to four centimeters in length, this capsule version is a better option for many patients. It causes less pain, there are no injection-site reactions, and there is no reason to miss school or work for the capsule.
The approval for this treatment came after the CHIASMA OPTIMAL trial, which showed that 58% of those on MYCAPSSA had the ability to maintain their insulin-like growth factor-1 responses in comparison to only 19% of those on placebo. Along with this data, all primary and secondary endpoints were met.
While there were adverse effects, they were minimal and typically resolved after the first three months of treatment. The major effect was gastrointestinal symptoms.
Chiasma, the creator of the treatment, is now looking to gain approval in the European Union. The hope is that data from the ongoing MPOWERED trial will lead to approval. Data should be available by the final quarter of this year.
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