Carfilzomib Shines in Studies of Patients with Relapsed Myeloma


carfilzomibCarfilzomib shined in pharmaceutical headlines recently with encouraging study data being shared in June 2015. Known as the brand name anticancer therapy Kyprolis, which is marketed by Onyx, the Carfilzomib injection proved to be superior to a Bortezomib-Dexamethasone combination treatment in patients with refractory multiple myeloma. Carfilzomib is an effectual single-agent therapy and proteasome inhibitor which in studies doubled progression free survival time in patients suffering from relapsed multiple myeloma. When compared to a combination therapy of Bortezomib and Dexamethasone, a higher dose of Carfilzomib then currently approved elicited an average progression free survival time of 18.7 months versus 9.4 months, respectively. Being that the standard best in care therapy for patients with unresectable multiple myeloma is currently Bortezomib and Dexamethasone, this new information regarding Carfilzomib efficacy offers new hope for the many patients who seek longer and better quality progression free survival time.

Myeloma AgeThe FDA approved dosage of Carfilzomib is 20 milligrams on days one and two of the first cycle, followed by a dosage of 27 milligrams daily thereafter to be infused in a two to ten minute time frame. Data from phase a first-ever phase III randomized study compared Carfilzomib with the standard therapy of Bortezomib, with both groups of patients also receiving Dexamethasone. In total 929 patients were dosed with Carfilzomib 20/56 mg/m2 via a 30 minute infusion or Bortezomib 1.3 mg/m2, via a subcutaneous injection or intravenously. All patients also received 20 milligrams daily of Dexamethasone. The patient population who were dosed with Carfilzomib regimen had it administered in 28-day cycles versus a 21-day cycle of treatment for the patients who were given Bortezomib. Roughly 15 percent of the patients enrolled in this study were older than age 75, but the average age for all of the participants was 65 years of age. A 47 percent reduction in hazard for disease progression or mortality was established for patients who were administered Carfilzomib and Dexamethasone, with twice as many participants achieving a complete response as compared the Bortezomib patient group. While grade 3 adverse events did occur with patients in both study groups, the most frequently reported side effects included fatigue, diarrhea, dyspnea and pyrexia.

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