The cost-effectiveness of canakinumab for secondary prevention of cardiovascular disease: The Australian healthcare perspective

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Background: Canakinumab is a fully human monoclonal antibody targeting interleukin-1β. It is currently indicated for use in those with rheumatologic disorders due to its anti-inflammatory properties, and was recently shown to be beneficial for the secondary prevention of cardiovascular disease (CVD). However, the cost-effectiveness of canakinumab used to treat CVD is unknown. Methods: A Markov state transition model was developed and populated with a hypothetical sample of 1000 individuals profiled on the Canakinumab Antiinflammatory Thrombosis Outcome Study (CANTOS); with a history of myocardial infarction (MI) and blood concentrations of high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hsCRP) of >2 mg/L. With each annual cycle, individuals could have a recurrent non-fatal CVD event (MI or stroke), or die from a CVD event or die from other causes based on data from CANTOS. Individuals continued to cycle through the model for 20 years or until death. Cost and utility data was applied. Outcomes were discounted (5% annually). Results: Over a 20-year time horizon, canakinumab is predicted to prevent 40 recurrent cardiovascular events and save 287 (discounted) years of life and 239 (discounted) quality-adjusted life years (QALYs) in 1000 individuals. At an annual cost of AUD36,049 (USD25,590, GBP19,662) per person, canakinumab would not be considered cost-effective within the Australian healthcare system, with an incremental cost-effectiveness ratio (ICER) of AUD1,221,170 per QALY gained. Conclusions: Canakinumab is an attractive treatment option to reduce recurrent CVD among patients with high hsCRP. It would be considered cost-effective in this treatment setting within the perspective of the Australian public healthcare system if its annual costs do not exceed AUD1500 (USD1065, GBP818) per person.

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages5
JournalInternational Journal of Cardiology
Publication statusPublished - 15 Jun 2019


  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Canakinumab
  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Cost-effectiveness
  • Prevention

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