MYPAN Trial Summary

Vasculitis is inflammation of the small blood vessels in the body. The exact cause of vasculitis is unknown. We do know that the immune system which normally fights infection, is overactive and is damaging the bodies own blood vessels. This condition can be serious if not treated.

The standard treatment for vasculitis at the moment is a combination of steroids, taken with a drug called cyclophosphamide which suppresses the body’s immune system. This treatment works well to control the disease, but has side effects, particularly infections. Doctors have been looking at other medicines that could be as effective but which don’t have as many side effects.  

Mycophenolate mofetil has been used safely to treat thousands of patients after transplantation. It has also been found to be effective in small research studies as an unlicensed treatment for autoimmune disorders such as lupus and other forms of vasculitis.  

In this study, two drugs are being compared; mycophenolate mofetil and cyclophosphamide. Both of these medicines are designed to dampen down the immune system. In research studies we often split participants up into groups to look at how different medicines work. People in one group get a different medicine than people in the other group. In the MYPAN study there are two groups;
Group 1: Mycophenolate Mofetil plus steroids
Group 2: Cyclophosphamide plus steroids

After the disease is controlled and participants are in remission, (usually 3-6 months after starting in the study) participants will stop mycophenolate mofetil or cyclophosphamide and start another medicine called azathioprine. Azathioprine is another medicine which dampens down the immune system, but it is not as strong as cyclophosphamide and mycophenolate mofetil.     

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