Efficacy and safety of mavrilimumab in giant cell arteritis: a phase 2, randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial

Maria C. Cid, Sebastian H. Unizony, Daniel Blockmans, Elisabeth Brouwer, Lorenzo Dagna, Bhaskar Dasgupta, Bernhard Hellmich, Eamonn Molloy, Carlo Salvarani, Bruce C. Trapnell, Kenneth J. Warrington, Ian Wicks, Manoj Samant, Teresa Zhou, Lara Pupim, John F. Paolini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objectives Granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF) is implicated in pathogenesis of giant cell arteritis. We evaluated the efficacy of the GM-CSF receptor antagonist mavrilimumab in maintaining disease remission. Methods This phase 2, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial enrolled patients with biopsy-confirmed or imaging-confirmed giant cell arteritis in 50 centres (North America, Europe, Australia). Active disease within 6 weeks of baseline was required for inclusion. Patients in glucocorticoid-induced remission were randomly assigned (3:2 ratio) to mavrilimumab 150 mg or placebo injected subcutaneously every 2 weeks. Both groups received a 26-week prednisone taper. The primary outcome was time to adjudicated flare by week 26. A prespecified secondary efficacy outcome was sustained remission at week 26 by Kaplan-Meier estimation. Safety was also assessed. Results Of 42 mavrilimumab recipients, flare occurred in 19% (n=8). Of 28 placebo recipients, flare occurred in 46% (n=13). Median time to flare (primary outcome) was 25.1 weeks in the placebo group, but the median was not reached in the mavrilimumab group (HR 0.38; 95% CI 0.15 to 0.92; p=0.026). Sustained remission at week 26 was 83% for mavrilimumab and 50% for placebo recipients (p=0.0038). Adverse events occurred in 78.6% (n=33) of mavrilimumab and 89.3% (n=25) of placebo recipients. No deaths or vision loss occurred in either group. Conclusions Mavrilimumab plus 26 weeks of prednisone was superior to placebo plus 26 weeks of prednisone for time to flare by week 26 and sustained remission in patients with giant cell arteritis. Longer treatment is needed to determine response durability and quantify the glucocorticoid-sparing potential of mavrilimumab.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)653-661
Number of pages9
JournalAnnals of the rheumatic diseases
Issue number5
StatePublished - 2022

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology
  • Rheumatology
  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology


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