Genentech Announces New Data Reinforcing the Long-Term Benefit of Venclexta-Based Combination for People With Relapsed or Refractory Chronic…

Posted: December 7, 2020 at 10:54 pm

SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Genentech, a member of the Roche Group (SIX: RO, ROG; OTCQX: RHHBY), today announced that new data from the pivotal Phase III MURANO and CLL14 studies support the efficacy of fixed-duration, chemotherapy-free Venclexta (venetoclax)-based combinations in certain people with chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) and provide more evidence on the potential value of minimal residual disease (MRD). Data were presented at the all-virtual 62nd American Society of Hematology (ASH) Annual Meeting and Exposition on Saturday, December 5, 2020.

These results reinforce the long-term value of fixed-duration, chemotherapy-free Venclexta-based combinations in CLL, potentially offering patients a significant period of time without treatment following initial therapy, said Levi Garraway, M.D., Ph.D., chief medical officer and head of Global Product Development. These data also reflect our ongoing commitment to accelerating clinical advancements for patients by exploring the novel endpoint minimal residual disease as a potential predictor of patient outcomes.

Five-year data from the pivotal Phase III MURANO trial continue to show sustained investigator-assessed progression-free survival (PFS) with Venclexta plus Rituxan (rituximab). Data, presented in an oral session, showed:

Data from the Phase III CLL14 study contributes to growing evidence regarding the potential of MRD measurements to predict future outcomes for certain people with previously untreated CLL who were treated with fixed-duration Venclexta plus Gazyva (obinutuzumab):

Exploring novel endpoints, such as MRD, is an important area of development for Genentech, which continues to investigate Venclexta in a robust clinical development program. This includes the Phase III CRISTALLO trial in previously untreated CLL, which uses MRD as a primary endpoint.

Venclexta is being developed by AbbVie and Genentech, a member of the Roche Group. It is jointly commercialized by the companies in the United States and commercialized by AbbVie outside of the United States.

*Minimal residual disease (MRD) is a measure of the number of remaining cancer cells. Undetectable MRD (uMRD), sometimes referred to as MRD-negativity, means that no cancer cells could be detected using a specific and highly sensitive test, and is defined as less than one cancer cell in 10,000 leukocytes.

About the MURANO Study

MURANO [NCT02005471] is a Phase III open-label, international, multicenter, randomized study evaluating the efficacy and safety of fixed-duration Venclexta (venetoclax) in combination with Rituxan (rituximab) compared to bendamustine in combination with Rituxan (BR). All treatments were of fixed duration. Following a five-week dose ramp-up schedule for Venclexta, patients on the Venclexta plus Rituxan arm received six cycles of Venclexta plus Rituxan followed by Venclexta monotherapy for up to two years total. Patients on the BR arm received six cycles of BR. The study included 389 patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia, with or without 17p deletion, who had been previously treated with at least one line of therapy. Patients were randomly assigned in a 1:1 ratio to receive either Venclexta plus Rituxan or BR. The primary endpoint of the study was progression-free survival. Secondary endpoints included overall survival, overall response rate and complete response rate (with or without complete blood count recovery).

About the CLL14 Study

CLL14 [NCT02242942] is a randomized Phase III study evaluating the combination of fixed-duration Venclexta (venetoclax) plus Gazyva (obinutuzumab) compared to Gazyva plus chlorambucil in adult patients with previously untreated chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) and co-existing medical conditions. 432 patients with previously untreated CLL were randomly assigned to receive either a 12-month duration of Venclexta alongside six-month duration of Gazyva (Arm A) or six-month duration of Gazyva alongside 12-month duration of chlorambucil (Arm B). Arm A started with an initial dosing of Gazyva followed by a five-week Venclexta dose ramp-up to help reduce the risk of tumor burden. The primary endpoint of the study is investigator-assessed progression-free survival (PFS). Secondary endpoints include PFS assessed by independent review committee, minimal residual disease (MRD) status, overall response rate, complete response rate (with or without complete blood count recovery), overall survival, duration of response, event-free survival, time to next CLL treatment, and safety. MRD-negativity, or undetectable MRD, means no cancer can be detected using a specific and highly sensitive test, and was defined as less than one cancer cell in 10,000 leukocytes. The CLL14 study is being conducted in cooperation with the German CLL Study Group, headed by Michael Hallek, M.D., University of Cologne.

About CLL

Chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) is the most common type of adult leukemia. In the United States, it is estimated that more than 20,000 new cases of CLL will be diagnosed in 2020. Although signs of CLL may disappear for a period of time after initial treatment, the disease is considered incurable and many people will require additional treatment due to the return of cancerous cells.

About Venclexta

Venclexta is a first-in-class targeted medicine designed to selectively bind and inhibit the B-cell lymphoma-2 (BCL-2) protein. In some blood cancers and other tumors, BCL-2 builds up and prevents cancer cells from dying or self-destructing, a process called apoptosis. Venclexta blocks the BCL-2 protein and works to restore the process of apoptosis.

Venclexta is being developed by AbbVie and Genentech, a member of the Roche Group. It is jointly commercialized by the companies in the United States and commercialized by AbbVie outside of the United States. Together, the companies are committed to research with Venclexta, which is currently being studied in clinical trials across several types of blood and other cancers.

In the United States, Venclexta has been granted five Breakthrough Therapy Designations by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA): one for previously untreated CLL, two for relapsed or refractory CLL and two for previously untreated acute myeloid leukemia.

Venclexta Indications

Venclexta is a prescription medicine used:

are 75 years of age or older, or have other medical conditions that prevent the use of standard chemotherapy.

It is not known if Venclexta is safe and effective in children.

Important Safety Information

What is the most important information patients should know about Venclexta?

Venclexta can cause serious side effects, including:

Tumor lysis syndrome (TLS). TLS is caused by the fast breakdown of cancer cells. TLS can cause kidney failure, the need for dialysis treatment, and may lead to death. The patients doctor will do tests to check their risk of getting TLS before they start taking Venclexta. The patient will receive other medicines before starting and during treatment with Venclexta to help reduce the risk of TLS. The patient may also need to receive intravenous (IV) fluids into their vein.

The patients doctor will do blood tests to check for TLS when the patient first starts treatment and during treatment with Venclexta. It is important for patients to keep appointments for blood tests. Patients should tell their doctor right away if they have any symptoms of TLS during treatment with Venclexta, including fever, chills, nausea, vomiting, confusion, shortness of breath, seizures, irregular heartbeat, dark or cloudy urine, unusual tiredness, or muscle or joint pain.

Patients should drink plenty of water during treatment with Venclexta to help reduce the risk of getting TLS.

Patients should drink 6 to 8 glasses (about 56 ounces total) of water each day, starting 2 days before the first dose on the day of the first dose of Venclexta, and each time a dose is increased.

The patients doctor may delay, decrease the dose, or stop treatment with Venclexta if the patient has side effects. When restarting Venclexta after stopping for 1 week or longer, the patients doctor may again check for the risk of TLS and change the patients dose.

What patients should not take Venclexta?

Certain medicines must not be taken when the patient first starts taking Venclexta and while the dose is being slowly increased because of the risk of increased TLS.

Before taking Venclexta, patients must tell their doctor about all of their medical conditions, including if they:

What to avoid while taking Venclexta:

Patients should not drink grapefruit juice or eat grapefruit, Seville oranges (often used in marmalades), or starfruit while they are taking Venclexta. These products may increase the amount of Venclexta in the patients blood.

What are the possible side effects of Venclexta?

Venclexta can cause serious side effects, including:

Patients should tell their doctor right away if they have a fever or any signs of an infection during treatment with Venclexta.

The most common side effects of Venclexta when used in combination with obinutuzumab or rituximab or alone in people with CLL or SLL include low white blood cell count; low platelet count; low red blood cell count; diarrhea; nausea; upper respiratory tract infection; cough; muscle and joint pain; tiredness; and swelling of arms, legs, hands, and feet.

The most common side effects of Venclexta in combination with azacitidine or decitabine or low-dose cytarabine in people with AML include nausea; diarrhea; low platelet count; constipation; low white blood cell count; fever with low white blood cell count; tiredness; vomiting; swelling of arms, legs, hands, or feet; fever; infection in lungs; shortness of breath; bleeding; low red blood cell count; rash; stomach (abdominal) pain; infection in your blood; muscle and joint pain; dizziness; cough; sore throat; and low blood pressure.

Venclexta may cause fertility problems in males. This may affect the ability to father a child. Patients should talk to their doctor if they have concerns about fertility.

These are not all the possible side effects of Venclexta. Patients should call their doctor for medical advice about side effects.

Report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 or http://www.fda.gov/medwatch. Report side effects to Genentech at 1-888-835-2555.

Please see the Venclexta full Prescribing Information, including the Medication Guide, for additional Important Safety Information.

Rituxan Indications

Rituxan (rituximab) is a prescription medicine used to treat adults with:

Important Safety Information:

Rituxan can cause serious side effects that can lead to death, including:

What should patients tell their doctor before receiving Rituxan?

Before receiving Rituxan, patients should tell their doctor if they:

What are the possible side effects of Rituxan?

Rituxan can cause serious side effects, including:

TLS can happen within 12 to 24 hours after an infusion of Rituxan. The patients doctor may do blood tests to check for TLS. The patients doctor may give medicine to help prevent TLS. Patients must tell their doctor right away if they have any of the following signs or symptoms of TLS:

The patients doctor will stop treatment with Rituxan if they have severe, serious, or life-threatening side effects.

What are the most common side effects during treatment with Rituxan?

Other side effects include:

These are not all of the possible side effects with Rituxan.

Please see the Rituxan full Prescribing Information, including the Medication Guide, for additional Important Safety Information at http://www.Rituxan.com.

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.

Gazyva Indications

Gazyva (obinutuzumab) is a prescription medicine used:

Important Safety Information

The most important safety information patients should know about Gazyva

Patients must tell their doctor right away about any side effect they experience. Gazyva can cause side effects that can become serious or life threatening, including:

Who should not receive Gazyva:

Patients should NOT receive Gazyva if they have had an allergic reaction (e.g., anaphylaxis or serum sickness) to Gazyva. Patients must tell their healthcare provider if they have had an allergic reaction to obinutuzumab or any other ingredients in Gazyva in the past.

Additional possible serious side effects of Gazyva:

Patients must tell their doctor right away about any side effect they experience. Gazyva can cause side effects that may become severe or life threatening, including:

The most common side effects of Gazyva in CLL were infusion reactions, low white blood cell counts, low platelet counts, low red blood cell counts, fever, cough, nausea, and diarrhea.

The safety of Gazyva was evaluated based on 392 patients with relapsed or refractory NHL, including FL (81 percent), small lymphocytic lymphoma (SLL) and marginal zone lymphoma (MZL) (a disease for which Gazyva is not indicated), who did not respond to or progressed within 6 months of treatment with rituximab product or a rituximab product-containing regimen. In patients with follicular lymphoma, the profile of side effects that were seen were consistent with the overall population who had NHL. The most common side effects of Gazyva were infusion reactions, low white blood cell counts, nausea, fatigue, cough, diarrhea, constipation, fever, low platelet counts, vomiting, upper respiratory tract infection, decreased appetite, joint or muscle pain, sinusitis, low red blood cell counts, general weakness, and urinary tract infection.

A randomized, open-label multicenter trial (GALLIUM) evaluated the safety of Gazyva as compared to rituximab product in 1,385 patients with previously untreated follicular lymphoma (86 percent) or marginal zone lymphoma (14 percent). The most common side effects of Gazyva were infusion reactions, low white blood cell count, upper respiratory tract infection, cough, constipation and diarrhea.

Before receiving Gazyva, patients should talk to their doctor about:

Patients should tell their doctor about any side effects.

These are not all of the possible side effects of Gazyva. For more information, patients should ask their doctor or pharmacist.

Gazyva is available by prescription only.

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.Gazyva.com for the Gazyva full Prescribing Information, including BOXED WARNINGS, 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, were 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.

About Genentech

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.

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