Efficacy and safety of B-cell targeting with rituximab in pemphigus patients

pemphigus rituximab

dr. B. Horvath
H. Rashid

Nature of the research:
Prospective case series of pemphigus patients treated with rituximab regimens between 2017-2019

Fields of study:
dermatology immunology

Background / introduction
Pemphigus is an autoimmune blistering disease, characterized by autoantibodies directed against the desmosomes that are important cel-cel junctions. [1]
Rituximab is a chimeric anti-CD20 monoclonal antibody that causes B-cell depletion. Rituximab has proven to be an effective treatment in pemphigus patients. [2,3,4]
However, over the years different schedules of dosage and time intervals have been used. We would like to investigate, which regimen results in the best efficacy and safety for pemphigus patient. [4]
Research question / problem definition
What is the efficacy of rituximab in pemphigus measured by:
- proportion of patients achieving disease control
- proportion of patients achieving remission
- proportion of patients with relapse
What is the safety profile of rituximab, measured by adverse events
The project is suitable for a research internship of 20 weeks. The student will perform a data extraction from prospective data of all pemphigus patients treated with rituximab at the dermatology department of the University Medical Center Groningen.
The patient characteristics and the objective and subjective outcome measurements can be extracted from the patient charts and analyzed by the student.

Since reading patient files is required for the research, the student must be able to understand dutch writing.
1. Joly P et a. First-line rituximab combined with short-term prednisone versus prednisone alone for the treatment of pemphigus (Ritux 3): a prospective, multicentre, parallel-group, open-label randomised trial. Lacet 2017; 389(10083):2031-2040
2. Bystryn JC, Rudolph JL. Pemphigus. Lancet. 2005 Jul 2-8;366(9479):61-73.
3. Horváth B, Huizinga J, Pas HH, Mulder AB, Jonkman MF. Low-dose rituximab is effective in pemphigus. British Association of Dermatologists 2012 166, pp405–412
4. Cianchini G, Lupi F, Masini C, Corona R, Puddu P, De Pità O. Therapy with rituximab for autoimmune pemphigus: Results from a single-center observational study on 42 cases with long-term follow-up. J Am Acad Dermatol. 2011; 67 (4), 617-622
5. Wang HH, Liu CW, Li YC, Huang YC. Efficacy of Rituximab for Pemphigus: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis of Different Regimens. Acta Derm Venereol 2015; 95: 928–932
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Laatst gewijzigd: 23 februari 2012