Understanding Pulmonary Hypertension
Pulmonary hypertension (PH) is a rare and incurable progressive disease that causes high blood pressure in the blood vessels connecting the heart and lungs.1,2 There are five groups of PH, as defined by the World Health Organization (WHO).1 Our focus has been on a specific, rare form of PH (WHO Group 1) called pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH), but our research covers other groups of PH too.1
Our Focus on PAH
In PAH, the pressure in the blood vessels of the lungs is elevated, resulting in stress on the heart.1 This can cause a shortness of breath, fatigue, weakness and chest pain.1 For the circa 7,500 people known to be living with the disease in the UK, these symptoms can make it hard to do everyday activities like climb stairs or take a short walk.1,3
While treatment can help reduce symptoms and improve quality of life, the prognosis for people with PAH remains poor.4 This is partly due to the delays patients face in getting the diagnosis and support they need. When PAH patients present with breathlessness, doctors may think of asthma or other more common conditions first and patients may end up waiting several years for a definitive diagnosis.5 On average patients can wait two years for a diagnosis.6
Our goal is to give people with PH a manageable condition
At Janssen, we are spearheading a new era for PH, working to transform the disease into a long-term manageable condition, so that patients can live a normal life. Supported by Actelion’s 20-year heritage of pioneering innovation, we are working to reach more patients and aim to help tackle the diagnosis gap that is delaying access to the care that patients need.
We want to use our full range of resources to tackle PH. From investment in research and development to innovation in medical devices and diagnostics, our commitment to building an innovative drug development pipeline is real. We're focused not only on how we treat PH but on a broader spectrum of goals for the PH community. That includes enhancing patient care, as well as advocating and educating to facilitate faster diagnosis.
Our pioneering medicines have contributed to improved patient outcomes for PAH communities
Our deep understanding of the complex pathways and molecular mechanisms involved in PAH has resulted in the development of tailored medicines that have improved patient outcomes.
We have a number of clinical trials ongoing which form a core part of our clinical development plan. We are searching for novel compounds that can focus on disease-modifying pathways and we’re investing in non- and less-invasive diagnostics and blood-based biomarkers to aid faster referral to specialist centres.
1. Galiè N, et al. 2015 ESC/ERS Guidelines for the diagnosis and treatment of pulmonary hypertension. European Respiratory Journal 2015; 46:903-975
2. PHA UK. About PH. Available at https://www.phauk.org/what-is-ph/ Last accessed May 2022.
3. Statista. Annual number of patients with pulmonary hypertension in the United Kingdom (UK) from 2004 to 2020. 2021. Available at: https://www.statista.com/statistics/571912/patients-with-pulmonary-hyper... Last accessed May 2022.
4. Corris P. Eur Respir Rev. Severe pulmonary arterial hypertension: treatment options and the bridge to transplantation 2014.
5. Vachiéry J-L and Gaine S. Challenges in the diagnosis and treatment of pulmonary arterial hypertension. Eur Respir Rev 2012;21-313–20
6. Prins KW, Thenappan T. World Health Organization Group I Pulmonary Hypertension: Epidemiology and Pathophysiology. Cardiol Clin. 2016 Aug;34(3):363-74.
CP-322382 | June 2022