FDA grants priority review to first-line SAA treatment



The Food and Drug Administration has granted priority review to Novartis for their severe aplastic anemia drug.

Eltrombopag (Promacta) is being evaluated for the first-line treatment of severe aplastic anemia (SAA) in combination with standard immunosuppressive therapy (IST). The drug is already approved in the United States for treatment of refractory SAA patients. It is also approved for treatment of chronic immune thrombocytopenia in adults and children who are refractory to other treatments or patients with chronic hepatitis C virus.

The priority review status was granted based on preliminary findings showing that eltrombopag plus IST outperformed IST alone in treatment-naïve patients. The study showed that 52% of newly diagnosed patients achieved a complete response at 6 months with eltrombopag plus IST, which was 35% higher than patients treated with IST alone. The overall response rate was 85% at 6 months in the eltrombopag group, according to Novartis.

The drugmaker received a breakthrough therapy designation from the FDA for eltrombopag for first-line use in SAA in January 2018.

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