Early Initiation of Adalimumab Significantly Diminishes Postoperative Crohn’s Disease Endoscopic Recurrence and Is Superior to 6-Mercaptopurine Therapy: An Open-Label, Randomized Controlled Study

Ayal Hirsch, Erez Scapa, Naomi Fliss-Isakov, Hagit Tulchinsky, Eran Itzkowitz, Yehuda Kariv, Yulia Ron, Henit Yanai, Ian White, Sharief Yassin, Nathaniel Aviv Cohen, Eli Brazovski, Iris Dotan, Nitsan Maharshak*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Postoperative recurrence (POR) is the rule in patients with Crohn’s disease (CD), mitigated with prophylactic therapy. The evidence for therapeutic choice and timing of intervention is lacking. We aimed to compare the rates of POR in patients treated early with prophylactic 6-mercaptopurine (6-MP) or adalimumab. We conducted a prospective single-center randomized open-label clinical study in which patients in surgical remission following their first ileocecectomy were randomized to receive early treatment with 6-MP or adalimumab. Patients were followed up clinically every 3 months and underwent endoscopy at weeks 32 and 58 postoperatively. The primary endpoint was endoscopic recurrence (ePOR) at 1 year (week 58), defined as a Rutgeerts score ≥ i2. We enrolled 35 patients (25 males, mean age 35 ± 1.4 years, median disease duration 5 ± 6.1 years) following ileocecectomy. Of these, seven (20%) were current smokers and nine (26%) biologics-experienced. Patients allocated to adalimumab had significantly less ePOR than patients treated with 6MP at week 32 (21% vs. 69%, p = 0.004) and 58 (47% vs. 75%), (p = 0.03, HR = 0.39, 95% CI = 0.16–0.93). POR was associated with an increased diameter of the resected small bowel surgical specimen, lower baseline body mass index (BMI), increased week 18 fecal calprotectin, increased week 18 serum alanine aminotransferase and decreased week 18 hemoglobin level. Adalimumab was more effective than 6-MP in preventing ePOR. Increased operative small bowel diameter and lower postoperative BMI were associated with ePOR. At eighteen weeks, serum hemoglobin, ALT and fecal calprotectin levels were predictive of endoscopic disease recurrence. (ClinicalTrials.gov ID NCT01629628).

Original languageEnglish
Article number7600
JournalJournal of Clinical Medicine
Volume12
Issue number24
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2023

Funding

FundersFunder number
AbbVie

    Keywords

    • 6-mercaptopurine
    • Crohn
    • adalimumab
    • clinical trial
    • surgery

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