Highlights of Skin Disease Education Foundation’s 11th Annual Psoriasis Forum

Vol. 34. No. 2


Clinicians who treat patients with psoriasis today practice in times that are both more challenging and potentially more rewarding
than ever. Both are presented by a rapidly evolving body of knowledge and literature regarding the pathophysiology and,
therefore, the treatment of psoriasis.
This continuing medical education activity is derived from chosen presentations offered at the Skin Disease Education Foundation
(SDEF) 11th Annual Psoriasis Forum. The articles chosen for inclusion in this supplement provide highlights of the presentations that
were deemed most relevant and practically helpful to our colleagues in clinical practice.
In the first article, the authors discuss some of the most important disease states that commonly exist with psoriasis as comorbid
conditions, including those that may increase morbidity and mortality and adversely affect quality of life. They also address the multiple
comorbidities that increase the risk for cardiovascular disease in patients with psoriasis, and the use of biologic therapy in patients with
psoriasis who have comorbid conditions or complications.
Following the introduction of TNF inhibitors, further advances in the understanding of psoriasis pathophysiology led to the
development of yet more choices for the effective and safe treatment of patients who are candidates for systemic therapy. These newer
and emerging treatments, discussed in the second article, include the interleukin (IL)-12/23 blocker ustekinumab (approved in 2009); the
IL-17 inhibitors secukinumab (approved in January 2015) and ixekizumab; the IL-17 receptor blocker brodalumab; the IL-23 blockers
tildrakizumab and guselkumab; and the small molecules apremilast (approved in 2014) and tofacitinib.
The tumor necrosis factor (TNF) inhibitors were the first biologic agents to be approved by the US Food and Drug Administration
for the treatment of psoriasis and remain a cornerstone of treatment for patients with moderate to severe disease. The third article in
this supplement reviews the mechanisms of action and efficacy and safety data on adalimumab, etanercept, and infliximab (the 3 TNF
inhibitors approved for psoriasis), and summarizes some observations from both clinical and research experience that may help clinicians
maximize the efficacy of these agents.
The fourth article provides a practical approach to screening patients prior to initiation of treatment with biologic agents and other
systemic treatments as well as monitoring patients during therapy. The goal of such surveillance is to individualize treatment outcomes
for optimum efficacy and minimum adverse events.
In addition to the articles in this supplement, readers are invited to access chosen presentations from the 2014 forum. These are
available online at http://tinyurl.com/SDEF11Psoriasis. We hope our colleagues find this supplement and the presentations helpful.