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DOI: 10.1186/s13063-024-08021-z; PMCID: PMC10956186


INTRODUCTION: Proteinuria is a modifiable risk factor for chronic kidney disease (CKD) progression in children. Finerenone, a selective, non-steroidal, mineralocorticoid receptor antagonist (MRA) has been approved to treat adults with CKD associated with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) following results from the phase III clinical trials FIDELIO-DKD (NCT02540993) and FIGARO-DKD (NCT02545049). In a pre-specified pooled analysis of both studies (N = 13,026), finerenone was shown to have an acceptable safety profile and was efficacious in decreasing the risk of adverse kidney and cardiovascular outcomes and of proteinuria.

OBJECTIVE: FIONA and the associated open-label extension (OLE) study aim to demonstrate that combining finerenone with an angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitor (ACEi) or angiotensin receptor blocker (ARB) is safe, well-tolerated, and effective in sustainably reducing urinary protein excretion in children with CKD and proteinuria.

DESIGN: FIONA (NCT05196035; Eudra-CT: 2021-002071-19) is a randomized (2:1), double-blind, placebo-controlled, multicenter, phase III study of 6 months' duration in approximately 219 pediatric patients. Patients must have a clinical diagnosis of CKD (an eGFR ≥ 30 mL/min/1.73 m2 if ≥ 1 to < 18 years or a serum creatinine level ≤ 0.40 mg/dL for infants 6 months to < 1 year) with significant proteinuria despite ACEi or ARB usage. The primary objective is to demonstrate that finerenone, added to an ACEi or ARB, is superior to placebo in reducing urinary protein excretion. FIONA OLE (NCT05457283; Eudra-CT: 2021-002905-89) is a single-arm, open-label study, enrolling participants who have completed FIONA. The primary objective of FIONA OLE is to provide long-term safety data. FIONA has two primary endpoints: urinary protein-to-creatinine ratio (UPCR) reduction of ≥ 30% from baseline to day 180 and percent change in UPCR from baseline to day 180. A sample size of 198 participants (aged 2 to < 18 years) in FIONA will provide at least 80% power to reject the null hypothesis of either of the two primary endpoints.

CONCLUSION: FIONA is evaluating the use of finerenone in children with CKD and proteinuria. Should safety, tolerability, and efficacy be demonstrated, finerenone could become a useful additional therapeutic agent in managing proteinuria and improving kidney outcomes in children with CKD.

TRIAL REGISTRATION: NCT05196035. Registered on 19 January 2022.

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MeSH Keywords

Adult; Humans; Child; Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2; Angiotensin Receptor Antagonists; Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme Inhibitors; Renal Insufficiency, Chronic; Proteinuria; Mineralocorticoid Receptor Antagonists; Diabetic Nephropathies; Naphthyridines


Chronic kidney disease; Finerenone; Mineralocorticoid; Pediatric; Proteinuria; Renoprotective therapy


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