Cat-SPIRE is the first of a new class of allergy treatments – Synthetic Peptide Immuno-Regulatory Epitopes. In common with our other SPIREs, the treatment was developed using Circassia’s ToleroMune® technology. Cat-SPIRE is the most advanced of this new class and is currently undergoing the final phase of clinical testing.
Cat allergy is one of the most common allergies. In Europe and the US, between 8 and 17% of the population are sensitised to the proteins in cat saliva, urine and skin flakes (dander) that are responsible for allergic reactions. These allergens are widespread in the environment and therefore difficult to avoid. Cat allergy is a perennial condition, and can reduce sufferers’ quality of life, lead to absences from work or school and result in reduced performance.
Circassia’s Cat-SPIRE treatment contains seven synthetically produced peptides identified from the main allergen responsible for allergy to cats (Fel d 1). It has successfully completed a number of phase II studies, and achieved unprecedented results. These showed that a short course of treatment substantially reduced patients’ symptoms, while also having a highly favourable safety profile. In long-term follow up, patients’ symptoms remained greatly improved two years after the start of the study, despite no further treatment after the initial four-dose, 12-week course of Cat-SPIRE (p<0.05 vs placebo at the end of the cat allergen challenge). The treatment began phase III testing in October 2012.