FDA approves biosimilar rituximab for NHL


Photo by Bill Branson

Vials of drug

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved a biosimilar rituximab product for the treatment of non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL).

Celltrion’s Truxima (rituximab-abbs) is a biosimilar of Genentech’s Rituxan and the first biosimilar approved in the United States to treat NHL.

Truxima (formerly CT-P10) is approved to treat adults with CD20-positive, B-cell NHL, either as a single agent or in combination with chemotherapy.

Specifically, Truxima is approved as a single agent to treat relapsed or refractory, low grade or follicular, CD20-positive, B-cell NHL.

Truxima is approved in combination with first-line chemotherapy to treat previously untreated follicular, CD20-positive, B-cell NHL.

Truxima is approved as single-agent maintenance therapy in patients with follicular, CD20-positive, B-cell NHL who achieve a complete or partial response to a rituximab product in combination with chemotherapy.

And Truxima is approved as a single agent to treat non-progressing, low-grade, CD20­-positive, B-cell NHL after first-line treatment with cyclophosphamide, vincristine, and prednisone.

The label for Truxima contains a boxed warning detailing the risk of fatal infusion reactions, severe skin and mouth reactions (some with fatal outcomes), hepatitis B virus reactivation that may cause serious liver problems (including liver failure and death), and progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy.

The FDA said its approval of Truxima is “based on a review of evidence that included extensive structural and functional characterization, animal study data, human pharmacokinetic data, clinical immunogenicity data, and other clinical data that demonstrates Truxima is biosimilar to Rituxan.”

A phase 3 trial recently published in The Lancet Haematology suggested that Truxima is equivalent to the reference product in patients with low-tumor-burden follicular lymphoma.

For more details on Truxima, see the prescribing information.

Next Article: