FDA approves first biosimilar for treatment of adult patients with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma
- November 28, 2018
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The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved Truxima (rituximab-abbs) as the first biosimilar to Rituxan (rituximab) for the treatment of adult patients with CD20-positive, B-cell non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (NHL) to be used as a single agent or in combination with chemotherapy. Truxima is the first biosimiliar to be approved in the U.S. for the treatment of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.
Truxima is indicated for the treatment of adult patients with:
- Relapsed or refractory, low grade or follicular, CD20-positive B-cell NHL as a single agent;
- Previously untreated follicular, CD20-positive, B-cell NHL in combination with first line chemotherapy and, in patients achieving a complete or partial response to a rituximab product in combination with chemotherapy, as single-agent maintenance therapy; and
- Non-progressing (including stable disease), low-grade, CD20¬ positive, B-cell NHL as a single agent after first-line cyclophosphamide, vincristine and prednisone (CVP) chemotherapy.
The most common side effects of Truxima are infusion reactions, fever, abnormally low level of lymphocytes in the blood (lymphopenia), chills, infection and weakness (asthenia). Health care providers are advised to monitor patients for tumor lysis syndrome (a complication of treatment where tumor cells are killed off at the same time and released into the bloodstream), cardiac adverse reactions, damage to kidneys (renal toxicity), and bowel obstruction and perforation. Patients should not receive vaccinations while in treatment. Women who are pregnant or breastfeeding should not take Truxima because it may cause harm to a developing fetus or newborn baby.
Like Rituxan, the labeling for Truxima contains a Boxed Warning to alert health care professionals and patients about increased risks of the following: fatal infusion reactions, severe skin and mouth reactions, some with fatal outcomes; Hepatitis B virus reactivation, that may cause serious liver problems including liver failure and death; and Progressive Multifocal Leukoencephalopathy, a rare, serious brain infection that can result in severe disability or death. This product must be dispensed with a patient Medication Guide that provides important information about the drug’s uses and risks.
For more information, please visit: Truxima