Ferring Pharmaceuticals begins Phase 2b/3 trial of selepressin for treatment of septic shock

Ferring Pharmaceuticals begins Phase 2b/3 trial of selepressin for treatment of septic shock
17 August 2015 pulse

Ferring Pharmaceuticals begins Phase 2b/3 trial of selepressin for treatment of septic shock

Saint-Prex, Switzerland – 17 August 2015 –

Ferring Pharmaceuticals announced initiation of patient enrollment in a phase 2b/3 clinical trial of selepressin for the treatment of septic shock, a life-threatening complication of infection affecting millions of people worldwide annually1. The trial, SEPSIS-ACT, will be conducted at 50-60 sites in Europe and the United States and will enroll 1800 patients.

Selepressin is a selective vasopressin type 1a receptor agonist which increases arterial pressure and has the potential to reduce vascular leakage and pulmonary oedema.

“Despite progress in identifying and treating septic shock, its impact upon patients and their families remains high, as does the burden it places on healthcare systems,” said Per Falk, Executive VP and Chief Scientific Officer at Ferring. “Ferring is investigating whether selepressin can provide an improved treatment option for patients suffering from septic shock.”

SEPSIS-ACT (Selepressin Evaluation Programme for Sepsis Induced Shock – Adaptive Clinical Trial) is a double blind, randomised, placebo controlled phase 2b/3 adaptive trial that aims to demonstrate efficacy and safety in patients with vasopressor-dependent septic shock. Its primary endpoint is the number of vasopressor and mechanical ventilator-free days up to day 30 following initiation of treatment. The intent is for the endpoint to reflect the speed of recovery from septic shock and respiratory failure.

“SEPSIS-ACT has the potential to be a landmark trial that could change the way patients are treated in the ICU,” said Dr. Derek Angus, Chair of the Department of Critical Care Medicine and Director of CRISMA (Clinical Research, Investigation, and Systems Modeling of Acute Illnesses) Center at the University of Pittsburgh. “It stands out for its innovative adaptive design, including a newly defined primary endpoint.”

– ENDS –

About septic shock

Severe sepsis and septic shock are major healthcare problems, affecting millions of people around the world each year, killing one in four (and often more), and are increasing in incidence.1 Septic shock occurs when sepsis, a potentially life-threatening complication of infection is complicated by low blood pressure that does not respond to standard treatment (fluid administration) and leads to problems in one or more of the vital organs. Septic shock patients require rapid emergency care in hospital intensive care units (ICU). Despite active treatment in the ICU, the death rate remains high.2,3

For further information on the SEPSIS-ACT trial, please visit

https://www.clinicaltrialsregister.eu/ctr-search/search?query=selepressin, or https://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT02508649?term=selepressin&rank=1

About Ferring Pharmaceuticals

Headquartered in Saint-Prex, Switzerland, Ferring Pharmaceuticals is a research-driven, specialty biopharmaceutical group active in global markets. The company identifies, develops and markets innovative products in a range of therapy areas. Ferring has its own operating subsidiaries in nearly 60 countries and markets its products in 110 countries.

To learn more about Ferring or its products please visit www.ferring.com.

For more information, please contact

Nicole Barraud-Estoppey
+41 (0) 58 301 00 53

Helen Gallagher
+41 (0) 58 301 00 51


  1. Dellinger RP, et al., Surviving sepsis campaign: international guidelines for management of severe sepsis and septic shock: 2012. Crit Care Med. 2013 Feb;41(2):580-637
  2. International Sepsis Forum, “Promoting a better understanding of SEPSIS,” Second Edition, Nov. 2003.
  3. Stevenson, EK, et al. Two Decades of Mortality Trends among Patients with Severe Sepsis: A Comparative Meta-analysis. Crit Care Med. 2014 March ; 42(3): 625–631.

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