Healthy Living

Canadians Now Have More Options to Treat Hodgkin Lymphoma

Canadians Now Have More Options to Treat Hodgkin Lymphoma

Seattle Genetics, Inc. has announced that Health Canada has approved ADCETRIS as a post-autologous stem cell transplant (ASCT) post-remission therapy for patients affected by Hodgkin lymphoma (HL) who are at a higher risk of cancer advancement or relapse. Positive results from phase three AETHREA clinical trials helped to approve this medication. ADCETRIS has already been approved in Canada for HL patients who relapsed after their ASCT or who relapsed after two multi-agent chemotherapy procedures who weren’t able to have an ASCT, as well as for systemic anaplastic large cell lymphoma (sALCL) patients who have relapsed after a multi-agent chemotherapy procedure.

Clay Siegall, President and Chief Executive Officer of Seattle Genetics, says with the expansion of the ADCETRIS label, Canadian doctors and patients will have more access to treat their HL. He says this is a great milestone towards expanding ADCETRIS availability globally to patients who need this important medication. Dr. Siegall also said a license application has been submitted to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for ADCETRIS approval in cutaneous T-cell lymphoma, which will also be submitted to Health Canada for approval.

Seattle Genetics has approved ADCETRIS. It is a biotechnology company that is mostly known to develop as well as promote antibody-based treatments, which are used for patients who suffer from cancer.

Seattle Genetics has now approved ADCETRIS as a post-autologous stem cell transplant, or ASCT, post-remission therapy for individuals who are affected by Hodgkin lymphoma (HL) and are at a higher risk of cancer advancement or future relapse. The positive results that were obtained from the phase three AETHREA clinical trials were strong enough to allow the approval of this medication. ADCETRIS is injected intravenously into the patient, and it has also been approved by the Food and Drugs Administration in three different indications, which are: for treating Hodgkin lymphoma after the failure of carrying out autologous hematopoietic stem cell transplantation, also known as auto-HSCT, or it can also be after the failure of two earlier multi-agent chemotherapy treatments which have been carried out; for the treatment of Hodgkin lymphoma patients who are known to be at a higher risk of relapse or further progression of the disease as post-auto-HSCT; and also for the treatment of those individuals with systemic anaplastic large cell lymphoma, or sALCL, after the failure of multi-agent chemotherapy treatments previously carried out. In the year 2013, Health Canada approved ADCETRIS for relapsed or refractory HL as well as sALCL and also for the post-ASCT treatment for JL patients who were at an increased risk of cancer advancement or relapse.

The dosage and administration of ADCETRIS is as follows: every three weeks, an individual should be given 50mg of the lyophilized powder. This has to be administered to the patient through an intravenous method over a period of thirty minutes or more. There are innumerable warnings and precautions for those who either currently consume or are planning to take ADCETRIS. It also includes a box warning about progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy, or PML. PML is a rare type of virus that is said to cause inflammation of the white matter present in the brain, and it can also lead to the death of the individual. ADCETRIS is contraindicated in those individuals who have concomitant bleomycin due to pulmonary toxicity. A few of the other warnings and precautions for this medication include peripheral neuropathy, which can occur over time; reactions to the infusion; and possible cases of anaphylaxis.

There are certain things an individual should make a note of before starting a course of ADCETRIS. Those who suffer from a mild to severe form of hepatic impairment or those who suffer from a severe case of renal failure should avoid this medication. Pregnant women or those who are planning to conceive should ideally consult their doctor first before starting this treatment. It is best to avoid getting pregnant while taking this medication. Also, women should not breastfeed during the course of their treatment.