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(ado-trastuzumab emtansine) for Injection



  • Do Not Substitute KADCYLA for or with trastuzumab.
  • Hepatotoxicity: Serious hepatotoxicity has been reported, including liver failure and death in patients treated with KADCYLA. Monitor serum transaminases and bilirubin prior to initiation of KADCYLA treatment and prior to each KADCYLA dose. Reduce dose or discontinue KADCYLA as appropriate in cases of increased serum transaminases or total bilirubin.
  • Cardiac Toxicity: KADCYLA administration may lead to reductions in left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF). Evaluate left ventricular function in all patients prior to and during treatment with KADCYLA. Withhold treatment for clinically significant decrease in left ventricular function.
  • Embryo-Fetal Toxicity: Exposure to KADCYLA during pregnancy can result in embryo-fetal harm. Advise patients of these risks and the need for effective contraception.


KADCYLA (ado-trastuzumab emtansine) is a HER2-targeted antibody-drug conjugate (ADC) which contains the humanized anti-HER2 IgG1, trastuzumab, covalently linked to the microtubule inhibitory drug DM1 (a maytansine derivative) via the stable thioether linker MCC (4-[N-maleimidomethyl] cyclohexane-1-carboxylate). Emtansine refers to the MCC-DM1 complex.

The antibody trastuzumab, is a well characterized recombinant monoclonal antibody product produced by mammalian (Chinese hamster ovary) cells, and the small molecule components (DM1 and MCC) are produced by chemical synthesis. Ado-trastuzumab emtansine contains an average of 3.5 DM1 molecules per antibody. Ado-trastuzumab emtansine has the following chemical structure:

KADCYLA® (ado-trastuzumab emtansine) Structural Formula Illustration

Note: The bracketed structure is DM1 plus MCC which represents the emtansine component. The n is, on average, 3.5 DM1 molecules per trastuzumab (Mab) molecule.

KADCYLA (ado-trastuzumab emtansine) is a sterile, white to off-white preservative free lyophilized powder in single-use vials. Each vial contains 100 mg or 160 mg ado-trastuzumab emtansine. Following reconstitution, each single-use vial contains ado-trastuzumab emtansine (20 mg/mL), polysorbate 20 [0.02% (w/v)], sodium succinate (10 mM), and sucrose [6% (w/v)] with a pH of 5.0 and density of 1.026 g/mL. The resulting solution containing 20 mg/mL adotrastuzumab emtansine is administered by intravenous infusion following dilution.

Last reviewed on RxList: 5/6/2016
This monograph has been modified to include the generic and brand name in many instances.

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