Healthcare Industry News: Thalidomide
News Release - July 18, 2013
Celgene Will Discontinue Phase III ORIGIN(R) Trial in Previously Untreated Elderly Patients with B-Cell Chronic Lymphocytic LeukemiaSUMMIT, N.J.--(Healthcare Sales & Marketing Network)--Celgene Corporation (CELG) today announced that after consultation with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Celgene will discontinue treatment with REVLIMID® (lenalidomide) in the open-label, phase III ORIGIN® trial, which enrolled 450 patients in over 100 sites in 26 countries. An imbalance was observed in the number of deaths in patients treated with lenalidomide versus patients treated with chlorambucil.
REVLIMID is not approved as a treatment for patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia.
The ORIGIN study was designed to evaluate the efficacy and safety of lenalidomide versus chlorambucil as single agent in elderly patients ? 65 years of age with B-cell chronic lymphocytic leukemia and with comorbidities that precluded treatment with more aggressive standard chemo-immunotherapies, including fludarabine and bendamustine containing regimens. The majority of patients presented with multiple comorbidities, such as diabetes, congestive heart failure, renal impairment and elevated bilirubin count.
Based on an imbalance in deaths, specifically 34 deaths out of 210 patients in the lenalidomide arm compared to 18 deaths out of 211 patients in the chlorambucil arm, FDA placed the study on clinical hold. No specific causality for this imbalance has been identified to date.
Results from the CLL-008 study will be presented at an upcoming medical conference.
All other Celgene-sponsored chronic lymphocytic leukemia clinical trials with lenalidomide are continuing in accordance with their respective protocols.
REVLIMID is approved in combination with dexamethasone for the treatment of patients with multiple myeloma who have received at least one prior therapy, in nearly 70 countries, encompassing Europe, the Americas, the Middle-East and Asia, and in combination with dexamethasone for the treatment of patients whose disease has progressed after one therapy in Australia and New Zealand.
REVLIMID is approved in the United States, Canada, Switzerland, Australia, New Zealand and several Latin American countries, as well as Malaysia and Israel, for transfusion-dependent anaemia due to low- or intermediate-1-risk MDS associated with a deletion 5q cytogenetic abnormality with or without additional cytogenetic abnormalities and in Europe for the treatment of patients with transfusion-dependent anemia due to low- or intermediate-1-risk myelodysplastic syndromes associated with an isolated deletion 5q cytogenetic abnormality when other therapeutic options are insufficient or inadequate.
REVLIMID is approved in the United States for the treatment of patients with mantle cell lymphoma (MCL) whose disease has relapsed or progressed after two prior therapies, one of which included bortezomib.
U.S. Regulatory Information for Revlimid
REVLIMID® (lenalidomide) in combination with dexamethasone is indicated for the treatment of patients with multiple myeloma (MM) who have received at least one prior therapy
REVLIMID® (lenalidomide) is indicated for the treatment of patients with transfusion-dependent anemia due to low- or intermediate-1–risk myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS) associated with a deletion 5q cytogenetic abnormality with or without additional cytogenetic abnormalities
REVLIMID® (lenalidomide) is indicated for the treatment of patients with mantle cell lymphoma (MCL) whose disease has relapsed or progressed after two prior therapies, one of which included bortezomib
Important Safety Information
WARNING: EMBRYO-FETAL TOXICITY, HEMATOLOGIC TOXICITY, and VENOUS THROMBOEMBOLISM
Do not use REVLIMID during pregnancy. Lenalidomide, a Thalidomide analogue, caused limb abnormalities in a developmental monkey study. Thalidomide is a known human teratogen that causes severe life-threatening human birth defects. If lenalidomide is used during pregnancy, it may cause birth defects or embryo-fetal death. In females of reproductive potential, obtain 2 negative pregnancy tests before starting REVLIMID treatment. Females of reproductive potential must use 2 forms of contraception or continuously abstain from heterosexual sex during and for 4 weeks after REVLIMID treatment. To avoid embryo-fetal exposure to lenalidomide, REVLIMID is only available through a restricted distribution program, the REVLIMID REMS™ program (formerly known as the “RevAssist®”program).
Information about the REVLIMID REMS™ Program is available at www.celgeneriskmanagement.com or by calling the manufacturer’s toll-free number 1-888-423-5436.
Hematologic Toxicity (Neutropenia and Thrombocytopenia)
REVLIMID can cause significant neutropenia and thrombocytopenia. Eighty percent of patients with del 5q MDS had to have a dose delay/reduction during the major study. Thirty-four percent of patients had to have a second dose delay/reduction. Grade 3 or 4 hematologic toxicity was seen in 80% of patients enrolled in the study. Patients on therapy for del 5q MDS should have their complete blood counts monitored weekly for the first 8 weeks of therapy and at least monthly thereafter. Patients may require dose interruption and/or reduction. Patients may require use of blood product support and/or growth factors.
REVLIMID has demonstrated a significantly increased risk of deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and pulmonary embolism (PE) in patients with MM who were treated with REVLIMID and dexamethasone therapy. Patients and physicians are advised to be observant for the signs and symptoms of thromboembolism. Patients should be instructed to seek medical care if they develop symptoms such as shortness of breath, chest pain, or arm or leg swelling. It is not known whether prophylactic anticoagulation or antiplatelet therapy prescribed in conjunction with REVLIMID may lessen the potential for venous thromboembolism. The decision to take prophylactic measures should be done carefully after an assessment of an individual patient’s underlying risk factors.
REVLIMID can cause fetal harm when administered to a pregnant female. Lenalidomide is contraindicated in females who are pregnant. If this drug is used during pregnancy or if the patient becomes pregnant while taking this drug, the patient should be apprised of the potential hazard to the fetus
REVLIMID is contraindicated in patients who have demonstrated hypersensitivity (e.g., angioedema, Stevens-Johnson syndrome, toxic epidermal necrolysis) to lenalidomide
WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS
REVLIMID is an analogue of Thalidomide, a known human teratogen that causes life-threatening human birth defects or embryo-fetal death. An embryo-fetal development study in monkeys indicates that lenalidomide produced malformations in the offspring of female monkeys who received the drug during pregnancy, similar to birth defects observed in humans following exposure to Thalidomide during pregnancy
Females of Reproductive Potential: Must avoid pregnancy for at least 4 weeks before beginning REVLIMID therapy, during therapy, during dose interruptions and for at least 4 weeks after completing therapy. Must commit either to abstain continuously from heterosexual sexual intercourse or to use two methods of reliable birth control beginning 4 weeks prior to initiating treatment with REVLIMID, during therapy, during dose interruptions and continuing for 4 weeks following discontinuation of REVLIMID therapy. Must obtain 2 negative pregnancy tests prior to initiating therapy
Males: Lenalidomide is present in the semen of patients receiving the drug. Males must always use a latex or synthetic condom during any sexual contact with females of reproductive potential while taking REVLIMID and for up to 28 days after discontinuing REVLIMID, even if they have undergone a successful vasectomy. Male patients taking REVLIMID must not donate sperm
Blood Donation: Patients must not donate blood during treatment with REVLIMID and for 1 month following discontinuation of the drug because the blood might be given to a pregnant female patient whose fetus must not be exposed to REVLIMID
REVLIMID REMS™ Program
Because of embryo-fetal risk, REVLIMID is available only through a restricted program under a Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategy (REMS) the REVLIMID REMS Program (formerly known as the “RevAssist®” Program). Prescribers and pharmacies must be certified with the program and patients must sign an agreement form and comply with the requirements. Further information about the REVLIMID REMS program is available at www.celgeneriskmanagement.com or by telephone at 1-888-423-5436
Hematologic Toxicity: REVLIMID can cause significant neutropenia and thrombocytopenia. MM: Patients taking REVLIMID for MM should have their complete blood counts monitored every 2 weeks for the first 12 weeks and then monthly thereafter. In the pooled MM trials Grade 3 and 4 hematologic toxicities were more frequent in patients treated with the combination of REVLIMID and dexamethasone than in patients treated with dexamethasone alone. MCL: Patients taking REVLIMID for MCL should have their complete blood counts monitored weekly for the first cycle (28 days), every 2 weeks during cycles 2-4, and then monthly thereafter. In the MCL trial, Grade 3 or 4 neutropenia was reported in 43% of the patients. Grade 3 or 4 thrombocytopenia was reported in 28% of the patients. Patients may require dose interruption and/or dose reduction
Venous Thromboembolism: Venous thromboembolic events (predominantly deep venous thrombosis and pulmonary embolism) have occurred in patients with MM treated with lenalidomide combination therapy and patients with MDS or MCL treated with lenalidomide monotherapy. It is not known whether prophylactic anticoagulation or antiplatelet therapy prescribed in conjunction with REVLIMID may lessen the potential for venous thromboembolism. The decision to take prophylactic measures should be done carefully after assessment of the individual patient’s underlying risk factors
Allergic Reactions: Angioedema and serious dermatologic reactions including Stevens-Johnson syndrome (SJS) and toxic epidermal necrolysis (TEN) have been reported. These events can be fatal. Patients with a prior history of Grade 4 rash associated with Thalidomide treatment should not receive REVLIMID. REVLIMID interruption or discontinuation should be considered for Grade 2-3 skin rash. REVLIMID must be discontinued for angioedema, Grade 4 rash, exfoliative or bullous rash, or if SJS or TEN is suspected and should not be resumed following discontinuation for these reactions. REVLIMID capsules contain lactose. Risk-benefit of REVLIMID treatment should be evaluated in patients with lactose intolerance
Tumor Lysis Syndrome: Fatal instances of tumor lysis syndrome (TLS) have been reported during treatment with lenalidomide. The patients at risk of TLS are those with high tumor burden prior to treatment. These patients should be monitored closely and appropriate precautions taken
Tumor Flare Reaction: Tumor flare reaction (TFR) has occurred during investigational use of lenalidomide for chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) and lymphoma, and is characterized by tender lymph node swelling, low grade fever, pain and rash. Treatment of CLL with lenalidomide outside of a well-monitored clinical trial is discouraged
Monitoring and evaluation for TFR is recommended in patients with MCL. Tumor flare may mimic the progression of disease (PD). In patients with Grade 3 or 4 TFR, it is recommended to withhold treatment with lenalidomide until TFR resolves to ? Grade 1. In the MCL trial, approximately 10% of subjects experienced TFR; all reports were Grade 1 or 2 in severity. All of the events occurred in cycle 1 and one patient developed TFR again in cycle 11. Lenalidomide may be continued in patients with Grade 1 and 2 TFR without interruption or modification, at the physician’s discretion. Patients with Grade 1 or 2 TFR may also be treated with corticosteroids, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and/or narcotic analgesics for management of TFR symptoms. Patients with Grade 3 or 4 TFR may be treated for management of symptoms per the guidance for treatment of Grade 1 and 2 TFR
Hepatotoxicity: Hepatic failure, including fatal cases, has occurred in patients treated with lenalidomide in combination with dexamethasone. The mechanism of drug-induced hepatotoxicity is unknown. Pre-existing viral liver disease, elevated baseline liver enzymes, and concomitant medications may be risk factors. Monitor liver enzymes periodically. Stop Revlimid upon elevation of liver enzymes. After return to baseline values, treatment at a lower dose may be considered
Second Primary Malignancies: Patients with MM treated with lenalidomide in studies including melphalan and stem cell transplantation had a higher incidence of second primary malignancies, particularly acute myelogenous leukemia (AML) and Hodgkin lymphoma, compared to patients in the control arms who received similar therapy but did not receive lenalidomide. Monitor patients for the development of second malignancies. Take into account both the potential benefit of lenalidomide and the risk of second primary malignancies when considering treatment with lenalidomide
In the REVLIMID/dexamethasone treatment group, 269 patients (76%) underwent at least one dose interruption with or without a dose reduction of REVLIMID compared to 199 patients (57%) in the placebo/dexamethasone treatment group
Of these patients who had one dose interruption with or without a dose reduction, 76% (269/353) vs 57% (199/350), 50% in the REVLIMID/dexamethasone treatment group underwent at least one additional dose interruption with or without a dose reduction compared to 21% in the placebo/dexamethasone treatment group
Most adverse events and Grade 3/4 adverse events were more frequent in MM patients who received the combination of REVLIMID/dexamethasone compared to placebo/dexamethasone
Grade 3/4 neutropenia occurred in 33.4% vs 3.4%; 2.3% experienced Grade 3/4 febrile neutropenia vs 0%
Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) was reported as a serious adverse drug reaction (7.4%) or Grade 3/4 (8.2%) compared to 3.1% and 3.4%. Discontinuations due to DVT were reported at comparable rates between groups
Pulmonary embolism (PE) was reported as a serious adverse drug reaction (3.7%) or Grade 3/4 (4.0%) compared to 0.9% and 0.9%. Discontinuations due to PE were reported at comparable rates between groups
Adverse reactions reported in ?15% of MM patients (REVLIMID/dexamethasone vs dexamethasone/placebo): fatigue (44% vs 42%), neutropenia (42% vs 6%), constipation (41% vs 21%), diarrhea (39% vs 27%), muscle cramp (33% vs 21%), anemia (31% vs 24%), pyrexia (28% vs 23%), peripheral edema (26% vs 21%), nausea (26% vs 21%), back pain (26% vs 19%), upper respiratory tract infection (25% vs 16%), dyspnea (24% vs 17%), dizziness (23% vs 17%), thrombocytopenia (22% vs 11%), rash (21% vs 9%), tremor (21% vs 7%), weight decreased (20% vs 15%), nasopharyngitis (18% vs 9%), blurred vision (17% vs 11%), anorexia (16% vs 10%), and dysgeusia (15% vs 10%)
Thrombocytopenia (61.5%; 91/148) and neutropenia (58.8%; 87/148) were the most frequently reported adverse events observed in the del 5q MDS population
Grade 3 and 4 adverse events reported in ? 5% of patients with del 5q MDS were neutropenia (53%), thrombocytopenia (50%), pneumonia (7%), rash (7%), anemia (6%), leukopenia (5%), fatigue (5%), dyspnea (5%), and back pain (5%)
Other adverse events reported in ?15% of del 5q MDS patients (REVLIMID): diarrhea (49%), pruritus (42%), rash (36%), fatigue (31%), constipation (24%), nausea (24%), nasopharyngitis (23%), arthralgia (22%), pyrexia (21%), back pain (21%), peripheral edema (20%), cough (20%), dizziness (20%), headache (20%), muscle cramp (18%), dyspnea (17%), pharyngitis (16%), epistaxis (15%), asthenia (15%), upper respiratory tract infection (15%)
Mantle Cell Lymphoma
Grade 3 and 4 adverse events reported in ?5% of patients treated with REVLIMID in the MCL trial (N=134) included neutropenia (43%), thrombocytopenia (28%), anemia (11%), pneumonia (9%), leukopenia (7%), fatigue (7%), diarrhea (6%), dyspnea (6%), and febrile neutropenia (6%)
Serious adverse events reported in ?2 patients treated with REVLIMID monotherapy for MCL included chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, clostridium difficile colitis, sepsis, basal cell carcinoma, and supraventricular tachycardia
Adverse events reported in ?15% of patients treated with REVLIMID in the MCL trial included neutropenia (49%), thrombocytopenia (36%), fatigue (34%), anemia (31%), diarrhea (31%), nausea (30%), cough (28%), pyrexia (23%), rash (22%), dyspnea (18%), pruritus (17%), peripheral edema (16%), constipation (16%), and leukopenia (15%)
Adverse events occurring in patients treated with REVLIMID in the MCL trial resulted in at least one dose interruption in 76 (57%) patients, at least one dose reduction in 51 (38%) patients, and discontinuation of treatment in 26 (19%) patients
Periodic monitoring of digoxin plasma levels, in accordance with clinical judgment and based on standard clinical practice in patients receiving this medication, is recommended during administration of REVLIMID. It is not known whether there is an interaction between dexamethasone and warfarin. Close monitoring of PT and INR is recommended in MM patients taking concomitant warfarin. Erythropoietic agents, or other agents, that may increase the risk of thrombosis, such as estrogen containing therapies, should be used with caution in MM patients receiving lenalidomide with dexamethasone
USE IN SPECIFIC POPULATIONS
Pregnancy: If pregnancy does occur during treatment, immediately discontinue the drug. Under these conditions, refer patient to an obstetrician/gynecologist experienced in reproductive toxicity for further evaluation and counseling. Any suspected fetal exposure to REVLIMID must be reported to the FDA via the MedWatch program at 1-800-332-1088 and also to Celgene Corporation at 1-888-423-5436
Nursing Mothers: It is not known whether REVLIMID is excreted in human milk. Because many drugs are excreted in human milk and because of the potential for adverse reactions in nursing infants, a decision should be made whether to discontinue nursing or the drug, taking into account the importance of the drug to the mother
Pediatric Use: Safety and effectiveness in pediatric patients below the age of 18 have not been established
Geriatric Use: Since elderly patients are more likely to have decreased renal function, care should be taken in dose selection. Monitor renal function
Renal Impairment: Since REVLIMID is primarily excreted unchanged by the kidney, adjustments to the starting dose of REVLIMID are recommended to provide appropriate drug exposure in patients with moderate (CLcr 30-60 mL/min) or severe renal impairment (CLcr
Please see full Prescribing Information, including Boxed WARNINGS, CONTRAINDICATIONS, WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS, and ADVERSE REACTIONS.
Celgene Corporation, headquartered in Summit, New Jersey, is an integrated global pharmaceutical company engaged primarily in the discovery, development and commercialization of innovative therapies for the treatment of cancer and inflammatory diseases through gene and protein regulation. For more information, please visit the Company's website at www.celgene.com.
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