FDA approves trabectedin for some advanced soft tissue sarcomas



The Food and Drug Administration has approved trabectedin for the treatment of advanced or unresectable liposarcomas and leiomyosarcomas that have been previously treated with anthracycline-based regimens.

Approval is based on improvements in progression-free survival in a trial of 518 participants with metastatic or recurrent leiomyosarcoma or liposarcoma, randomly assigned to receive either trabectedin (345 patients) or dacarbazine (173 patients). Median progression-free survival was 4.2 months for those in the trabectedin arm, compared with 1.5 months for those in the dacarbazine arm, according to an Oct. 23 statement issued by the FDA.

The most common side effects for those in the trabectedin arm were nausea, fatigue, vomiting, diarrhea, constipation, decreased appetite, dyspnea, headache, peripheral edema, neutropenia, thrombocytopenia, anemia, elevated liver enzymes, and decreases in albumin.

The drug label carries a warning of the risk of neutropenic sepsis, rhabdomyolysis, hepatotoxicity, extravasation, tissue necrosis, and cardiomyopathy. Women should be advised of potential risks to a developing fetus, and those who are breastfeeding should not take trabectedin, the FDA said.

Trabectedin, an alkylating drug, is marketed as Yondelis by Janssen Products of Raritan, N.J.

The label is available on the FDA website at drugsatfda.

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