SYDNEY & CAMBRIDGE, Mass. & BEIJING--(BUSINESS WIRE)--BeiGene (NASDAQ: BGNE; HKEX: 06160), a global, science-driven biotechnology company focused on developing innovative and affordable medicines to improve treatment outcomes and access for patients worldwide, today announced that BRUKINSA® (zanubrutinib) has been approved in Australia for the treatment of adult patients with Waldenström’s macroglobulinemia (WM) who have received at least one prior therapy or in first line treatment for patients unsuitable for chemo-immunotherapy.1 Following registration of BRUKINSA with the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA), these patients will have immediate access to BRUKINSA through a BeiGene sponsored post-approval, pre-reimbursement access program.
In addition, BRUKINSA recently received approval from the Singapore Health Sciences Authority (HSA) for the treatment of adult patients with mantle cell lymphoma (MCL) who have received at least one prior therapy.
“BTK inhibition is an established mode of treatment for patients with WM, and the ASPEN trial showed that BRUKINSA is highly effective and has improved tolerability compared to the first-generation BTK inhibitor,” said Professor Con Tam, MBBS, M.D., Disease Group Lead for Low Grade Lymphoma and Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia at the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre and a principal investigator on the BRUKINSA clinical program. “BeiGene first began clinical trials of BRUKINSA in Australia in 2013, and since that time, many Australians have benefitted from treatment as part of ongoing clinical studies. We hope this therapy will offer new hope for people living with WM in Australia.”
In Australia, more than 6,000 people are diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (NHL) each year, making it the sixth most common cancer in adults.2 WM is a rare, slow-growing lymphoma that occurs in less than two percent of patients with NHL.3 The disease usually affects older adults and is primarily found in the bone marrow, although it may also impact lymph nodes and the spleen.3
“While WM is a slow-growing lymphoma, not all patients fully respond to existing therapies and many discontinue treatment due to side effects,” commented David Young, the National Team Leader at the WMozzies. “We are pleased to hear that people living with WM in Australia will have immediate access to this next-generation BTK inhibitor that has demonstrated clinical benefit with potential to improve treatment outcomes.”
BeiGene has submitted for reimbursement of WM to the Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee (PBAC). In a first for the PBAC, BeiGene expects to enter a facilitated resolution pathway in order to seek a listing date for the WM indication.
“BRUKINSA has been shown to induce deep and durable responses with reduced off-target side effects, suggesting improved clinical benefit compared to standard BTK inhibitor therapy,” said Jane Huang, M.D., Chief Medical Officer, Hematology at BeiGene. “We are grateful to the Australian investigators, patients and families who participated in clinical trials contributing to TGA approval. Our ability to offer BRUKINSA to people in Australia impacted by WM is another step toward fulfilling our goal of increasing affordable access to oncology medicines around the world.”
“This approval in Australia, and our recent approval in Singapore, represent BRUKINSA’s continued expansion in the APAC region,” added Adam Roach, Vice President and Head of Commercial for APAC (ex-Greater China) at BeiGene. “We have been building commercial teams in these markets to support our goal of bringing this potential best-in-class BTK inhibitor to patients who need them globally.”
The Australian registration for BRUKINSA in WM is based on efficacy results from the ASPEN clinical trial, a Phase 3 randomised, open-label, multicentre trial (NCT03053440) that evaluated BRUKINSA compared to ibrutinib in patients with relapsed or refractory (R/R) or treatment-naïve (TN) WM who harbor a MYD88 mutation (MYD88MUT). In the ASPEN trial, BRUKINSA demonstrated a numerically higher very good partial response (VGPR) rate (28.4%, 95% CI: 20, 38) compared to ibrutinib (19.2%, 95% CI: 12, 28), although the primary endpoint of statistical superiority related to deep response (VGPR or better) was not met.
In the ASPEN trial, of the 101 patients with WM randomized and treated with BRUKINSA, 5% of patients discontinued due to adverse events, including cardiomegaly, neutropenia, plasma cell myeloma, and subdural haemorrhage. Adverse events leading to dose reduction occurred in 14.9% of patients, with the most common being neutropenia (3.0%) and diarrhea (2.0%).
The overall safety profile of BRUKINSA is based on pooled data from 779 patients with B-cell malignancies treated with BRUKINSA in clinical trials. The most common adverse reactions (≥20%) with BRUKINSA were neutropenia, thrombocytopenia, upper respiratory tract infection, haemorrhage/haematoma, rash, bruising, anaemia, musculoskeletal pain, diarrhea, pneumonia, and cough. The most common Grade 3 or higher adverse reactions (≥5%) were neutropenia, thrombocytopenia, pneumonia, and anaemia.
The recommended dose of BRUKINSA is either 160 mg twice daily or 320 mg once daily, taken orally with or without food. The dose may be adjusted for adverse reactions and reduced for patients with severe hepatic impairment and certain drug interactions.
About BRUKINSA® (zanubrutinib)
BRUKINSA is a small molecule inhibitor of Bruton’s tyrosine kinase (BTK) discovered by BeiGene scientists that is currently being evaluated globally in a broad clinical program as a monotherapy and in combination with other therapies to treat various B-cell malignancies. Because new BTK is continuously synthesised, BRUKINSA was specifically designed to deliver complete and sustained inhibition of the BTK protein by optimising bioavailability, half-life, and selectivity. With differentiated pharmacokinetics compared to other approved BTK inhibitors, BRUKINSA has been demonstrated to inhibit the proliferation of malignant B cells within a number of disease relevant tissues.
BRUKINSA is approved in the United States, China, Australia, Canada, and other international markets in selected indications and under development for additional approvals globally.
BeiGene is committed to advancing hematology, immuno-oncology and targeted therapies in order to bring impactful and affordable medicines to patients across the globe. We have a growing R&D team of approximately 2,300 colleagues dedicated to advancing more than 90 clinical trials involving more than 13,000 patients and healthy subjects. Our expansive portfolio is directed by a predominantly internalised clinical development team supporting trials in more than 40 countries or regions. We currently market three medicines discovered and developed in our labs: BTK inhibitor BRUKINSA in the United States, China, Canada, and additional international markets; and non-FC-gamma receptor binding anti-PD-1 antibody tislelizumab and PARP inhibitor pamiparib in China. BeiGene has a high quality, innovative science and medicine organisation and is a leader in China with a large oncology focused commercial team.
BeiGene also partners with innovative companies who share our goal of developing therapies to address global health needs. We commercialise a range of oncology medicines in China licensed from Amgen and Bristol Myers Squibb. We also plan to address greater areas of unmet need globally through our collaborations including with Amgen, Bio-Thera, EUSA Pharma, Mirati Therapeutics, Seagen, and Zymeworks. BeiGene has also entered into a collaboration with Novartis granting Novartis rights to develop, manufacture, and commercialise tislelizumab in North America, Europe, and Japan.
BeiGene is a global, science-driven biotechnology company focused on developing innovative and affordable medicines to improve treatment outcomes and access for patients worldwide. With a broad portfolio of more than 40 clinical candidates, we are expediting development of our diverse pipeline of novel therapeutics through our own capabilities and collaborations. We are committed to radically improving access to medicines for two billion more people by 2030. BeiGene has a growing global team of over 7,000 colleagues across five continents. To learn more about BeiGene, please visit www.beigene.com.au and follow us on Twitter at @BeiGeneGlobal.
This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 and other federal securities laws, including statements regarding plans for development and commercialisation of BRUKINSA in Australia, Singapore, the APAC region and other markets, the potential commercial opportunity for BRUKINSA, plans for making BRUKINSA accessible to patients in Australia, the potential for BRUKINSA to be a best-in-class BTK inhibitor and to provide improved clinical benefits to patients, and BeiGene’s plans, commitments, aspirations and goals under the headings “BeiGene Oncology” and “About BeiGene”. Actual results may differ materially from those indicated in the forward-looking statements as a result of various important factors, including BeiGene's ability to demonstrate the efficacy and safety of its drug candidates; the clinical results for its drug candidates, which may not support further development or marketing approval; actions of regulatory agencies, which may affect the initiation, timing and progress of clinical trials and marketing approval; BeiGene's ability to achieve commercial success for its marketed medicines and drug candidates, if approved; BeiGene's ability to obtain and maintain protection of intellectual property for its medicines and technology; BeiGene's reliance on third parties to conduct drug development, manufacturing and other services; BeiGene’s limited experience in obtaining regulatory approvals and commercialising pharmaceutical products and its ability to obtain additional funding for operations and to complete the development and commercialisation of its drug candidates and achieve and maintain profitability; the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the BeiGene’s clinical development, regulatory, commercial, and other operations, as well as those risks more fully discussed in the section entitled “Risk Factors” in BeiGene’s most recent quarterly report on Form 10-Q as well as discussions of potential risks, uncertainties, and other important factors in BeiGene's subsequent filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. All information in this press release is as of the date of this press release, and BeiGene undertakes no duty to update such information unless required by law.
- BRUKINSA Australia Product Information. Available at https://www.beigene.com.au/PDF/BRUKINSAAUPI.pdf. Accessed October 2021.
- https://www.lymphoma.org.au/types-of-lymphoma/non-hodgkin-lymphoma. Accessed August 2021.
- https://www.lls.org/sites/default/files/2021-07/FS20_Waldenstrom_FactSheet_2021.pdf. Accessed August 2021.