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DOI: 10.1002/pbc.29716


BACKGROUND: Sickle cell disease (SCD) is a devastating, multisystemic disorder that affects millions of people worldwide. The earliest clinical manifestations of SCD can affect infants as young as 6 months of age, and pediatric patients are at risk for acute and life-threatening complications. Early intervention with treatments that target the underlying pathophysiological mechanism of SCD, sickle hemoglobin (HbS) polymerization, are expected to slow disease progression and circumvent disease-associated morbidity and mortality.

PROCEDURE: The HOPE-KIDS 1 trial (NCT02850406) is an ongoing four-part, phase 2a, open-label, single- and multiple-dose study to evaluate the pharmacokinetics, efficacy, and safety of voxelotor-a first-in-class HbS polymerization inhibitor-in patients aged 6 months to 17 years with SCD. Initial findings from a cohort of 45 patients aged 4 to 11 years who received voxelotor treatment for up to 48 weeks are reported.

RESULTS: Hemoglobin (Hb) response, defined as a >1.0 g/dl increase from baseline, was achieved at week 24 by 47% (n = 16/34) of patients with Hb measurements at baseline and week 24. At week 24, 35% (n = 12/34) and 21% (n = 7/34) of patients had a >1.5 g/dl increase and a >2.0 g/dl increase from baseline in Hb concentration, respectively. Concurrent improvements in hemolytic markers were observed. Voxelotor was well tolerated in this young cohort, with no newly emerging safety signals.

CONCLUSIONS: Based on its mechanism as an HbS polymerization inhibitor, voxelotor improves Hb levels and markers of hemolysis and has the potential to mitigate SCD-related complications; these results support its use in patients aged ≥4 years.

Journal Title

Pediatric blood & cancer





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MeSH Keywords

Anemia, Sickle Cell; Benzaldehydes; Biomarkers; Child; Child, Preschool; Female; Hemoglobin, Sickle; Hemolysis; Humans; Male; Pyrazines; Pyrazoles


clinical data; hemolytic anemia; pediatric; sickle cell disease


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