SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Genentech, a member of the Roche Group (SIX: RO, ROG; OTCQX: RHHBY), today announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has accepted the company’s Biologics License Application (BLA) and granted Priority Review for mosunetuzumab, a potential first-in-class CD20xCD3 T-cell engaging bispecific antibody, for the treatment of adults with relapsed or refractory (R/R) follicular lymphoma (FL) who have received at least two prior systemic therapies. FL is the most common indolent (slow growing) form of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (NHL), a type of blood cancer, which often returns after initial therapy. The FDA is expected to make a decision on approval of this novel cancer immunotherapy by December 29, 2022.
“New therapeutic options are needed for follicular lymphoma, which often relapses after initial therapy and becomes increasingly difficult to treat each time it returns. Clinical trial results have demonstrated durable responses with mosunetuzumab in advanced follicular lymphoma, representing a step toward shifting the treatment paradigm,” said Levi Garraway, M.D., Ph.D., chief medical officer and head of Global Product Development. “Since mosunetuzumab does not require the collection or genetic modification of patient cells, it could become an effective, fixed-duration outpatient option without the barriers of travelling to a major academic center.”
The BLA is based on positive results from the pivotal Phase I/II GO29781 study of mosunetuzumab, which showed high complete response (CR) rates, with the majority of responders (57% [95% CI: 49-70]) maintaining responses for at least 18 months, and manageable tolerability in people with heavily pretreated FL. After a median follow-up of 18.3 months, the CR rate was 60% (n=54/90) and the objective response rate was 80% (n=72/90). The median duration of response among those who responded was 22.8 months (95% CI: 9.7-not estimable). The most common adverse event (AE) was cytokine release syndrome (39%; n=86/218), which was generally low grade (grade 1: 25.6%; grade 2: 14%; grade 3: 2.3%; grade 4: 0.5%), and all events resolved. Other common AEs (>20%) included fatigue, headache, neutropenia, fever and hypophosphatemia. Treatment was administered without mandatory hospitalization. Results were presented for the first time in December 2021 at the 63rd American Society of Hematology (ASH) Annual Meeting & Exposition.
Priority Review designation is granted to medicines that the FDA considers to have the potential to provide significant improvements in the safety and effectiveness of the treatment, prevention or diagnosis of a serious disease. The FDA granted Breakthrough Therapy Designation (BTD) to mosunetuzumab for the treatment of adults with R/R FL who have received at least two prior systemic therapies in June 2020 and Orphan Drug Designation in December 2018. BTD is designed to accelerate the development and review of medicines intended to treat serious or life-threatening conditions with preliminary evidence that indicates they may demonstrate substantial improvement over existing therapies. The European Commission granted conditional marketing authorization for mosunetuzumab for the treatment of people with R/R FL who have received at least two prior systemic therapies in June 2022.
A robust development program for mosunetuzumab is ongoing including two Phase III studies: CELESTIMO investigating mosunetuzumab plus lenalidomide in second-line plus (2L+) FL, and SUNMO, investigating mosunetuzumab plus Polivy® (polatuzumab vedotin) in 2L+ diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL).
About the GO29781 Study
The GO29781 study [NCT02500407] is a Phase I/II, multicenter, open-label, dose-escalation and expansion study evaluating the safety, efficacy and pharmacokinetics of mosunetuzumab in people with relapsed or refractory B-cell non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Outcome measures include complete response rate (best response) by independent review facility (primary endpoint), objective response rate, duration of response, progression-free survival, safety and tolerability (secondary endpoints).
About Follicular Lymphoma
Follicular lymphoma (FL) is the most common slow-growing (indolent) form of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, accounting for about one in five cases. It typically responds well to treatment but is often characterized by periods of remission and relapse. The disease typically becomes harder to treat each time a patient relapses, and early progression can be associated with poor long-term prognosis. In the United States, it is estimated that approximately 13,000 new cases of FL will be diagnosed in 2022.
Mosunetuzumab is a first-in-class CD20xCD3 T-cell engaging bispecific antibody designed to target CD20 on the surface of B cells and CD3 on the surface of T cells. This dual targeting activates and redirects a patient’s existing T cells to engage and eliminate target B cells by releasing cytotoxic proteins into the B cells. A robust clinical development program for mosunetuzumab is ongoing, investigating the molecule as a monotherapy and in combination with other medicines, for the treatment of people with B-cell non-Hodgkin’s lymphomas, including follicular lymphoma, diffuse large B-cell lymphoma and other blood cancers.
About Polivy® (polatuzumab vedotin-piiq)
Polivy is a first-in-class anti-CD79b antibody-drug conjugate (ADC). The CD79b protein is expressed specifically in the majority of B cells, an immune cell impacted in some types of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (NHL), making it a promising target for the development of new therapies. Polivy binds to CD79b and destroys these B cells through the delivery of an anti-cancer agent, which is thought to minimize the effects on normal cells. Polivy is being developed by Genentech using Seagen ADC technology and is currently being investigated for the treatment of several types of NHL.
Polivy U.S. Indication
Polivy is a prescription medicine used with other medicines, bendamustine and a rituximab product, to treat diffuse large B-cell lymphoma in adults who have progressed after at least two prior therapies.
The accelerated approval of Polivy is based on a type of response rate. There are ongoing studies to confirm the clinical benefit of Polivy.
Important Safety Information
Possible serious side effects
Everyone reacts differently to Polivy therapy, so it’s important to know what the side effects are. Some people who have been treated with Polivy have experienced serious to fatal side effects. A patient’s doctor may stop or adjust a patient’s treatment if any serious side effects occur. Patients must contact their healthcare team if there are any signs of these side effects.
- Nerve problems in arms and legs: This may happen as early as after the first dose and may worsen with every dose. If a patient already has nerve pain, Polivy may make it worse. The patient’s doctor will monitor for signs and symptoms, such as changes in sense of touch, numbness or tingling in hands or feet, nerve pain, burning sensation, any muscle weakness, or changes to walking patterns
- Infusion-related reactions: A patient may experience fever, chills, rash, breathing problems, low blood pressure, or hives within 24 hours of the infusion
- Infections: Patients should contact their healthcare team if they experience a fever of 100.4°F or higher, chills, cough, or pain during urination. Also, a patient’s doctor may give medication before giving Polivy, which may prevent some infections, and monitor blood counts throughout treatment with Polivy. Treatment with Polivy can cause severe low blood cell counts
- Rare and serious brain infections: A patient’s doctor will monitor the patient closely for signs and symptoms of these types of infections. Patients should contact their doctor if they experience confusion, dizziness or loss of balance, trouble talking or walking, or vision changes
- Tumor lysis syndrome: Caused by the fast breakdown of cancer cells. Signs include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and lack of energy
- Potential harm to liver: Some signs include tiredness, weight loss, pain in the abdomen, dark urine, and yellowing of the skin or the white part of the eyes. Patients may be at higher risk if they already have liver problems or are taking other medication
Side effects seen most often
The most common side effects during treatment were:
- Low blood cell counts (platelets, red blood cells, white blood cells)
- Nerve problems in arms and legs
- Tiredness or lack of energy
- Decreased appetite
Polivy may not be for everyone. A patient should talk to their doctor if they are:
- Pregnant or may be pregnant: Data have shown that Polivy may harm an unborn baby
- Planning to become pregnant: Women should avoid getting pregnant while taking Polivy. Women should use effective contraception during treatment and for at least 3 months after their last Polivy treatment. Men taking Polivy should use effective contraception during treatment and for at least 5 months after their last Polivy treatment
- Breastfeeding: Women should not breastfeed while taking Polivy and for at least 2 months after the last dose
These may not be all the side effects. Patients should talk to their healthcare provider for more information about the benefits and risks of Polivy treatment.
Report side effects to the FDA at (800) FDA-1088 or http://www.fda.gov/medwatch. Report side effects to Genentech at (888) 835-2555.
Please visit http://www.Polivy.com for the full Prescribing Information for additional Important Safety Information.
About Genentech in Hematology
For more than 20 years, Genentech has been developing medicines with the goal to redefine treatment in hematology. Today, we’re investing more than ever in our effort to bring innovative treatment options to people with diseases of the blood. For more information visit http://www.gene.com/hematology.
Founded more than 40 years ago, Genentech is a leading biotechnology company that discovers, develops, manufactures and commercializes medicines to treat patients with serious and life-threatening medical conditions. The company, a member of the Roche Group, has headquarters in South San Francisco, California. For additional information about the company, please visit http://www.gene.com.