"The U.S. Food and Drug Administration today approved Blincyto (blinatumomab) to treat patients with Philadelphia chromosome-negative precursor B-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (B-cell ALL), an uncommon form of ALL.
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Hepatitis B Virus Reactivation
Hepatitis B virus (HBV) reactivation, in some cases resulting in fulminant hepatitis, hepatic failure and death, can occur in patients treated with anti-CD20 antibodies such as GAZYVA. HBV reactivation has been reported in patients who are hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg) positive and also in patients who are HBsAg negative but are hepatitis B core antibody (anti-HBc) positive. Reactivation has also occurred in patients who appear to have resolved hepatitis B infection (i.e., HBsAg negative, anti-HBc positive, and hepatitis B surface antibody [anti-HBs] positive).
HBV reactivation is defined as an abrupt increase in HBV replication manifesting as a rapid increase in serum HBV DNA level or detection of HBsAg in a person who was previously HBsAg negative and anti-HBc positive. Reactivation of HBV replication is often followed by hepatitis, i.e., increase in transaminase levels and, in severe cases, increase in bilirubin levels, liver failure, and death.
Screen all patients for HBV infection by measuring HBsAg and anti-HBc before initiating treatment with GAZYVA. For patients who show evidence of hepatitis B infection (HBsAg positive [regardless of antibody status] or HBsAg negative but anti-HBc positive), consult physicians with expertise in managing hepatitis B regarding monitoring and consideration for HBV antiviral therapy.
Monitor patients with evidence of current or prior HBV infection for clinical and laboratory signs of hepatitis or HBV reactivation during and for several months following treatment with GAZYVA. HBV reactivation has been reported for other CD20-directed cytolytic antibodies following completion of therapy.
In patients who develop reactivation of HBV while receiving GAZYVA, immediately discontinue GAZYVA and any concomitant chemotherapy, and institute appropriate treatment. Resumption of GAZYVA in patients whose HBV reactivation resolves should be discussed with physicians with expertise in managing hepatitis B. Insufficient data exist regarding the safety of resuming GAZYVA in patients who develop HBV reactivation.
Progressive Multifocal Leukoencephalopathy
JC virus infection resulting in progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy (PML), which can be fatal, was observed in patients treated with GAZYVA. Consider the diagnosis of PML in any patient presenting with new onset or changes to pre-existing neurologic manifestations. Evaluation of PML includes, but is not limited to, consultation with a neurologist, brain MRI, and lumbar puncture. Discontinue GAZYVA therapy and consider discontinuation or reduction of any concomitant chemotherapy or immunosuppressive therapy in patients who develop PML.
GAZYVA can cause severe and life-threatening infusion reactions. Two-thirds of patients experienced a reaction to the first 1000 mg infused of GAZYVA. Infusion reactions can also occur with subsequent infusions. Symptoms may include hypotension, tachycardia, dyspnea, and respiratory symptoms (e.g., bronchospasm, larynx and throat irritation, wheezing, laryngeal edema). Other common symptoms include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, hypertension, flushing, headache, pyrexia, and chills [see ADVERSE REACTIONS].
Premedicate patients with acetaminophen, anti-histamine, and a glucocorticoid. Institute medical management (e.g., glucocorticoids, epinephrine, bronchodilators, and/or oxygen) for infusion reactions as needed. Closely monitor patients during the entire infusion. Infusion reactions within 24 hours of receiving GAZYVA have occurred [see DOSAGE AND ADMINISTRATION].
For patients with any Grade 4 infusion reactions, including but not limited to anaphylaxis, acute life-threatening respiratory symptoms, or other life-threatening infusion reaction: Stop the GAZYVA infusion. Permanently discontinue GAZYVA therapy.
For patients with Grade 1, 2, or 3 infusion reactions: Interrupt GAZYVA for Grade 3 reactions until resolution of symptoms. Interrupt or reduce the rate of the infusion for Grade 1 or 2 reactions and manage symptoms [see DOSAGE AND ADMINISTRATION].
For patients with pre-existing cardiac or pulmonary conditions, monitor more frequently throughout the infusion and the post-infusion period since they may be at greater risk of experiencing more severe reactions. Hypotension may occur as part of the GAZYVA infusion reaction. Consider withholding antihypertensive treatments for 12 hours prior to, during each GAZYVA infusion, and for the first hour after administration until blood pressure is stable. For patients at increased risk of hypertensive crisis, consider the benefits versus the risks of withholding their hypertensive medication as is suggested here.
Tumor Lysis Syndrome
Acute renal failure, hyperkalemia, hypocalcemia, hyperuricemia, and/or hyperphosphatemia from Tumor Lysis Syndrome (TLS) can occur within 12–24 hours after the first infusion. Patients with high tumor burden and/or high circulating lymphocyte count ( > 25 x 109/L) are at greater risk for TLS and should receive appropriate tumor lysis prophylaxis with antihyperuricemics (e.g., allopurinol) and hydration beginning 12–24 hours prior to the infusion of GAZYVA [see DOSAGE AND ADMINISTRATION]. For treatment of TLS, correct electrolyte abnormalities, monitor renal function, and fluid balance, and administer supportive care, including dialysis as indicated.
Serious bacterial, fungal, and new or reactivated viral infections can occur during and following GAZYVA therapy. Do not administer GAZYVA to patients with an active infection. Patients with a history of recurring or chronic infections may be at increased risk of infection.
GAZYVA in combination with chlorambucil caused Grade 3 or 4 neutropenia in 34% of patients in the trial. Patients with Grade 3 to 4 neutropenia should be monitored frequently with regular laboratory tests until resolution. Anticipate, evaluate, and treat any symptoms or signs of developing infection.
Neutropenia can also be of late onset (occurring more than 28 days after completion of treatment) and/or prolonged (lasting longer than 28 days).
GAZYVA in combination with chlorambucil caused Grade 3 or 4 thrombocytopenia in 11% of patients in the trial. In 5% of patients, GAZYVA caused acute thrombocytopenia occurring within 24 hours after the GAZYVA infusion. Fatal hemorrhagic events during Cycle 1 have also been reported in patients treated with GAZYVA.
Monitor all patients frequently for thrombocytopenia and hemorrhagic events, especially during the first cycle. In patients with Grade 3 or 4 thrombocytopenia, monitor platelet counts more frequently until resolution and consider subsequent dose delays of Gazyva and chlorambucil or dose reductions of chlorambucil. Transfusion of blood products (i.e., platelet transfusion) may be necessary. Consider withholding concomitant medications which may increase bleeding risk (platelet inhibitors, anticoagulants), especially during the first cycle.
The safety and efficacy of immunization with live or attenuated viral vaccines during or following GAZYVA therapy has not been studied. Immunization with live virus vaccines is not recommended during treatment and until B-cell recovery.
Carcinogenesis, Mutagenesis, Impairment Of Fertility
No carcinogenicity or genotoxicity studies have been conducted with obinutuzumab.
No specific studies have been conducted to evaluate potential effects on fertility; however, no adverse effects on male or female reproductive organs were observed in the 26-week repeat-dose toxicity study in cynomolgus monkeys.
Use In Specific Populations
Pregnancy Category C
There are no adequate and well-controlled studies of GAZYVA in pregnant women. Women of childbearing potential should use effective contraception while receiving GAZYVA and for 12 months following treatment. GAZYVA should be used during pregnancy only if the potential benefit justifies the potential risk to the fetus.
In a pre- and post-natal development study, pregnant cynomolgus monkeys received weekly intravenous doses of 25 or 50 mg/kg obinutuzumab from day 20 of pregnancy until parturition. There were no teratogenic effects in animals. The high dose results in an exposure (AUC) that is 2.4 times the exposure in patients with CLL at the recommended label dose. When first measured on Day 28 postpartum, obinutuzumab was detected in offspring and B cells were completely depleted. The B-cell counts returned to normal levels, and immunologic function was restored within 6 months after birth.
It is not known whether obinutuzumab is excreted in human milk. However, obinutuzumab is excreted in the milk of lactating cynomolgus monkeys and human IgG is known to be excreted in human milk. Because many drugs are excreted in human milk and because of the potential for serious adverse reactions in nursing infants from GAZYVA, a decision should be made whether to discontinue nursing, or discontinue drug, taking into account the importance of the drug to the mother.
The safety and effectiveness of GAZYVA in pediatric patients has not been established.
Of 240 previously untreated CLL patients who received GAZYVA in combination with chlorambucil, 196 patients (82%) were ≥ 65 years of age and 109 patients (45%) were ≥ 75 years of age. The median age was 74 years. Of the 109 patients ≥ 75 years of age, 49 (45%) experienced serious adverse events and 5 (5%) experienced adverse events leading to death. For 131 patients < 75 years of age, 39 (30%) experienced a serious adverse event and 3 (2%) an adverse event leading to death. Similar rates were observed in the comparator arm. No significant differences in efficacy were observed between patients ≥ 75 years of age and those < 75 years of age [see Clinical Studies].
Based on population pharmacokinetic analysis, a baseline creatinine clearance (CLcr) > 30 mL/min does not affect the pharmacokinetics of GAZYVA. GAZYVA has not been studied in patients with a baseline CLcr < 30 mL/min [see CLINICAL PHARMACOLOGY].
GAZYVA has not been studied in patients with hepatic impairment.
Last reviewed on RxList: 7/14/2014
This monograph has been modified to include the generic and brand name in many instances.
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