Conflict of Interest
Research in practice: Substance P antagonism in chronic pruritus
Article first published online: 24 MAY 2014
© 2014 Deutsche Dermatologische Gesellschaft (DDG). Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
JDDG: Journal der Deutschen Dermatologischen Gesellschaft
Volume 12, Issue 7, pages 557–559, July 2014
How to Cite
Lotts, T. and Ständer, S. (2014), Research in practice: Substance P antagonism in chronic pruritus. JDDG: Journal der Deutschen Dermatologischen Gesellschaft, 12: 557–559. doi: 10.1111/ddg.12364
All authors are members of the Working Group for Dermatological Research (Arbeitsgemeinschaft Dermatologische Forschung, ADF). Sonja Ständer received consulting honorariums from Nerre, Tigercat and Vanda.
- Issue published online: 1 JUL 2014
- Article first published online: 24 MAY 2014
- Manuscript Accepted: 7 MAR 2014
- Manuscript Received: 4 FEB 2014
- German Federal Ministry of Education and Research. Grant Number: BMBF 01KG1305
Pruritus is an unpleasant sensation of the skin, which triggers a desire to scratch or rub. The chronic form (≥6 weeks’ duration) often occurs as a side effect of many diseases and is usually accompanied by a high loss in quality of life for patients, especially in cases in which the symptom is chronic without adequate treatment options. In recent years, the situation improved continuously, guidelines for chronic pruritus have been defined and standard medications have been proposed. For many reasons, there are still patients who are unable to obtain relief. New therapeutic approaches are therefore urgently needed. Blocking the neuropeptide substance P is a promising strategy; substance P mediates clinically relevant pro-inflammatory effects by binding to the neurokinin 1 receptor (NK-1R). This led us to hypothesize that NK-1R antagonists are promising therapeutic options for chronic pruritus. Several international case series have meanwhile proven the antipruritic effect of the NK-1R antagonist aprepitant for various forms of chronic pruritus. Initiation of clinical trials with new NK-1R-antagonists as a new therapeutic option continues this trend.