Reference Excerpt 25

Esketamine Nasal Spray Plus Oral Antidepressant in Patients With Treatment-Resistant Depression: Assessment of Long-Term Safety in a Phase 3, Open-Label Study (SUSTAIN-2).


Wajs, E., Aluisio, L., Holder, R., Daly, E. J., Lane, R., Lim, P., George, J. E., Morrison, R. L., Sanacora, G., Young, A. H., Kasper, S., Sulaiman, A. H., Li, C.-T., Paik, J.-W., Manji, H., Hough, D., Grunfeld, J., Jeon, H. J., Wilkinson, S. T., … Singh, J. B. (2020). The Journal of Clinical Psychiatry, 81(3). https://doi.org/10.4088/JCP.19m12891

Objective: To evaluate long-term safety and efficacy of esketamine nasal spray plus a new oral antidepressant (OAD) in patients with treatment-resistant depression (TRD).

Methods: This phase 3, open-label, multicenter, long-term (up to 1 year) study was conducted between October 2015 and October 2017. Patients (≥ 18 years) with TRD (DSM-5 diagnosis of major depressive disorder and nonresponse to ≥ 2 OAD treatments) were enrolled directly or transferred from a short-term study (patients aged ≥ 65 years). Esketamine nasal spray (28-mg, 56-mg, or 84-mg) plus new OAD was administered twice a week in a 4-week induction (IND) phase and weekly or every-other-week for patients who were responders and entered a 48-week optimization/maintenance (OP/MAINT) phase.

Results: Of 802 enrolled patients, 86.2% were direct-entry and 13.8% were transferred-entry; 580 (74.5%) of 779 patients who entered the IND phase completed the phase, and 150 (24.9%) of 603 who entered the OP/MAINT phase completed the phase. Common treatment-emergent adverse events (TEAEs) were dizziness (32.9%), dissociation (27.6%), nausea (25.1%), and headache (24.9%). Seventy-six patients (9.5%) discontinued esketamine due to TEAEs. Fifty-five patients (6.9%) experienced serious TEAEs. Most TEAEs occurred on dosing days, were mild or moderate in severity, and resolved on the same day. Two deaths were reported; neither was considered related to esketamine. Cognitive performance generally either improved or remained stable postbaseline. There was no case of interstitial cystitis or respiratory depression. Treatment-emergent dissociative symptoms were transient and generally resolved within 1.5 hours postdose. Montgomery-Åsberg Depression Rating Scale total score decreased during the IND phase, and this reduction persisted during the OP/MAINT phase (mean [SD] change from baseline of respective phase to endpoint: IND, -16.4 [8.76]; OP/MAINT, 0.3 [8.12]).

Conclusions: Long-term esketamine nasal spray plus new OAD therapy had a manageable safety profile, and improvements in depression appeared to be sustained in patients with TRD.

Trial Registration: ClinicalTrials.gov identifier: NCT02497287. © Copyright 2020 Physicians Postgraduate Press, Inc.