Background: CD11a/CD18 comprise subunits of leukocyte function associated antigen (LFA-1), a T-cell surface molecule important in T-cell activation, T-cell emigration into skin, and cytotoxic T-cell function. Objective: We explored the immunobiologic and clinical effects of treating moderate to severe psoriasis vulgaris with a single dose of humanized monoclonal antibody against CD11a (hu1124). Methods: This was an open label study with a single dose of hu1124 at doses of 0.03 to 10 mg/kg. Clinical (Psoriasis Area and Severity Index [PASI]) and immunohistologic parameters (epidermal thickness, epidermal and dermal T-cell numbers, and keratinocyte intercellular adhesion molecule I [ICAM-1] expression) were followed. Results: Treatment with hu1124, at doses higher than 1.0 mg/kg (group III), completely blocks CD11a staining for at least 14 days in both blood and psoriatic plaques. At 0.3 to 1.0 mg/kg, T-cell CD11a staining was completely blocked; however, blockade lasted less than 2 weeks (group II). Only partial saturation of either blood or plaque cellular CD11a was observed at doses of hu1124 between 0.01 and 0.1 mg/kg (group I). This pharmacodynamic response was accompanied by decreased numbers of epidermal and dermal CD3+ T cells, decreased keratinocyte and blood vessel expression of ICAM-1, and epidermal thinning. Statistically significant drops in PASI compared with baseline were observed in group II patients at weeks 3 and 4 and in group III patients at weeks 2 through 10. No significant drop in PASI score was observed in group 1. Adverse events were mild at doses of 0.3 mg/kg or less and included mild chills, abdominal discomfort, headache, and fever. At a single dose of 0.6 mg/kg or higher, headache was the most common dose-limiting toxicity observed. Conclusion: Targeting CD11a may improve psoriasis by inhibiting T- cell activation, T-cell emigration into the skin, and cytotoxic T-cell function.
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