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What you need to know about

Biological drugs

A new era of personalized medicine

Biological drugs, or biologics, are medications designed to target specific biological pathways, dramatically improving treatment of allergic diseases that do not respond to conventional medications.

We offer biologics to treat our most challenging cases of asthma, urticaria (hives) and atopic dermatitis (eczema). Featuring an outstanding safety profile, our patients often tell us that these drugs are life changing.

Biologics have expanded our approach to personalized medicine, which separates patients into different groups and tailors medical decisions, practices, interventions and products to the individual based on predicted response or risk of disease.

We are committed to providing our patients with the most scientifically advanced treatments and are excited about the promising results of biological drugs.

Biological drugs for asthma

Drug include:

  • Omalizumab (Xolair)
  • Mepolizumab (Nucala)
  • Reslizumab (Cinqair)

Comprised of antibodies that help decrease allergic responses, omalizumab blocks the allergic antibody called IgE, while mepolizumab and reslizumab target IL-5, a chemical which blocks eosinophils (a cell that inflames asthma patients’ lungs).

These biological drugs are used when asthma symptoms can’t be controlled by conventional asthma inhalers and pills. They’ve been shown to decrease the number of asthma flares, and some can improve lung function and lessen the need for prednisone. Several other biologics are being actively studied and may be approved for use in the near future.

Biological drugs for hives

Chronic urticaria – or hives – are itchy, red welts that persist for more than six weeks, causing extreme discomfort and interfering with sleep and daily activities. In addition to asthma, omalizumab (Xolair) is approved for chronic hives in adults and children 12 and older, after antihistamines have been tried without success.
Clinical studies show that omalizumab reduces the number of hive flares and itch severity. Some patients say that they’re completely itch and hive free.

Biological drugs for eczema

Atopic dermatitis (AD) – or eczema – is characterized by dry, scaly skin and intense itching. Skin also may become thickened from long-term scratching and rubbing. Living with uncontrolled moderate to severe AD can be extremely challenging. Just ask one of the 1+ million adults in the U.S. who struggle with this disease.
Dupilumab (Dupixent) treats adult patients with moderate to severe eczema whose disease is not well controlled with prescription topical skin therapies or who can’t use topical therapies. Used with or without topical corticosteroids, dupilumab impedes allergic inflammation by blocking a specific immunologic receptor. Patients often see a dramatic response, resulting in clearing or near clearing of skin. The drug is also being actively studied to treat asthma and chronic rhinosinusitis/nasal polyps.