Reduction of New Heterotopic Ossification (HO) in the Open-Label, Phase 3 MOVE Trial of Palovarotene for Fibrodysplasia Ossificans Progressiva (FOP)

Robert J. Pignolo, Edward C. Hsiao, Mona Al Mukaddam, Geneviève Baujat, Staffan K. Berglund, Matthew A. Brown, Angela M. Cheung, Carmen De Cunto, Patricia Delai, Nobuhiko Haga, Peter Kannu, Richard Keen, Kim Hanh Le Quan Sang, Edna E. Mancilla, Rose Marino, Andrew Strahs, Frederick S. Kaplan

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Fibrodysplasia ossificans progressiva (FOP) is an ultra-rare, severely disabling genetic disorder of progressive heterotopic ossification (HO). The single-arm, open-label, phase 3 MOVE trial (NCT03312634) assessed efficacy and safety of palovarotene, a selective retinoic acid receptor gamma agonist, in patients with FOP. Findings were compared with FOP natural history study (NHS; NCT02322255) participants untreated beyond standard of care. Patients aged ≥4 years received palovarotene once daily (chronic: 5 mg; flare-up: 20 mg for 4 weeks, then 10 mg for ≥8 weeks; weight-adjusted if skeletally immature). The primary endpoint was annualized change in new HO volume versus NHS participants (by low-dose whole-body computed tomography [WBCT]), analyzed using a Bayesian compound Poisson model (BcPM) with square-root transformation. Twelve-month interim analyses met futility criteria; dosing was paused. An independent Data Monitoring Committee recommended trial continuation. Post hoc 18-month interim analyses utilized BcPM with square-root transformation and HO data collapsed to equalize MOVE and NHS visit schedules, BcPM without transformation, and weighted linear mixed-effects (wLME) models, alongside prespecified analysis. Safety was assessed throughout. Eighteen-month interim analyses included 97 MOVE and 101 NHS individuals with post-baseline WBCT. BcPM analyses without transformation showed 99.4% probability of any reduction in new HO with palovarotene versus NHS participants (with transformation: 65.4%). Mean annualized new HO volume was 60% lower in MOVE versus the NHS. wLME results were similar (54% reduction fitted; nominal p = 0.039). All palovarotene-treated patients reported ≥1 adverse event (AE); 97.0% reported ≥1 retinoid-associated AE; 29.3% reported ≥1 serious AE, including premature physeal closure (PPC)/epiphyseal disorder in 21/57 (36.8%) patients aged <14 years. Post hoc computational analyses using WBCT showed decreased vertebral bone mineral density, content, and strength, and increased vertebral fracture risk in palovarotene-treated patients. Thus, post hoc analyses showed evidence for efficacy of palovarotene in reducing new HO in FOP, but high risk of PPC in skeletally immature patients.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)381-394
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Bone and Mineral Research
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2023



ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine


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