New data, treatments in atopic dermatitis, psoriasis

Atopic dermatitis (AD) and psoriasis are among the most common reasons patients visit a dermatologist. Management for both conditions is changing dramatically as years of research produce new agents, new strategies, and new concepts for both diseases.

“Clinicians have almost too many choices in biologics for psoriasis,” said Jashin J. Wu, MD, director of dermatology research at Kaiser Permanente Los Angeles Medical Center. “There are currently eight FDA-approved biologics for psoriasis with four more on the way in the next one to two years, plus five FDA-approved biosimilars for psoriasis. Atopic dermatitis is just entering the biologic era with one approved agent and more in development. Twenty years ago, you had methotrexate, cyclosporine, and acitretin, and now you have almost too many choices to keep track of.”

Dr. Wu will direct a forum discussion on “Psoriasis and Atopic Dermatitis: Advances in Therapy and Comorbidities” (F012) today from 9 to 11 a.m. Five speakers will explore the latest data on comorbidities; new oral, topical, and phototherapies; and recently approved biologics, including two new interleukin inhibitor classes.

Given the rapid progress in understanding AD, many of the principles learned in medical school have changed or are incomplete. Emerging evidence on epidemiology and comorbidities suggest that the disease burden is even greater than many clinicians realize, and that distinct differences in the skin barrier between young children and adults suggest different management strategies in these two populations.

The skin microbiome is emerging as a key factor in the development and progression of AD. Future treatments may focus on adding commensal bacterial species to the microbiome rather than simply trying to control the overgrowth Staphylococcus aureus.

Emerging topical and systemic treatments will continue to refine management strategies as new data on immune system involvement helps guide future research.

“These are common, lifelong skin rashes with no cure,” Dr. Wu said. “Almost 10% of the entire population has one of these two rashes. If you have a general dermatology practice, this will be one of the more practical sessions at the AAD Annual Meeting.”

Amy Paller, MD

A symposium focused solely on “Atopic Dermatitis” (S065) will follow the combined atopic dermatitis-psoriasis session on Monday from 1 to 4 p.m.

“Atopic dermatitis is a hot, hot area with considerable new data on its comorbidities, pathogenesis, and the impact of new therapies,” said symposium director Amy Paller, MD, professor and chair of dermatology and professor of pediatrics at the Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine. “This is an opportunity to hear and ask questions of the thought leaders who are conducting cutting-edge research.”


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