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Amgen Receives FDA Breakthrough Therapy Designation For Investigational BiTE® Antibody Blinatumomab In Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia

July 14, 2014



By a News Reporter-Staff News Editor at Biotech Business Week -- Amgen (NASDAQ:AMGN) announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has granted Breakthrough Therapy Designation to investigational bispecific T cell engager (BiTE(®)) antibody blinatumomab, for adults with Philadelphia-negative (Ph-) relapsed/refractory B-precursor acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL), a rapidly progressing cancer of the blood and bone marrow(1) (see also Pharmaceutical Companies).

The Breakthrough Therapy Designation was based on the results of a Phase 2 trial of 189 adult patients with Ph- relapsed/refractory B-precursor ALL treated with blinatumomab. Data from the Phase 2 trial were most recently presented at the 50(th) Annual Meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) and the 19(th) Congress of the European Hematology Association (EHA).

"There is a high unmet need for new medicines to treat relapsed and refractory ALL patients, who have very few treatment options," said Sean E. Harper, M.D., executive vice president of Research and Development at Amgen. "The results from the Phase 2 trial evaluating blinatumomab in adult patients with relapsed or refractory ALL are encouraging and provide a strong basis for a regulatory filing later this year and potential approval in this serious disease."

The FDA states that Breakthrough Therapy Designation is intended to expedite the development and review of drugs for serious or life-threatening conditions. The criteria for Breakthrough Therapy Designation require preliminary clinical evidence that demonstrates the drug may have substantial improvement on at least one clinically significant endpoint over available therapy. A Breakthrough Therapy Designation conveys all of the fast-track program features, more intensive FDA guidance on an efficient drug development program, an organizational commitment involving senior managers, and eligibility for rolling review and priority review(2).

In the U.S. alone, it is estimated that over 6,000 cases of ALL were diagnosed in 2013, and in the European Union, more than 7,000 cases of ALL are diagnosed each year(3,4). In adult patients with relapsed or refractory ALL, median overall survival is just three to five months(5).

Keywords for this news article include: Antibodies, Pharmaceutical Companies, Amgen, Therapy, Oncology, Hematology, Immunology, Blood Proteins, Immunoglobulins, Biotechnology Companies, Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia, Government Agencies Offices and Entities.

Our reports deliver fact-based news of research and discoveries from around the world. Copyright 2014, NewsRx LLC


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Source: Biotech Business Week


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