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Published on 28 August 2014

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Bristol-Myers Squibb hepatitis C drug EU go ahead

Bristol-Myers Squibb has announced that the European Commission has approved Daklinza (daclatasvir), a potent, pan-genotypic NS5A replication complex inhibitor (in vitro), for use in combination with other medicinal products across genotypes 1, 2, 3 and 4 for the treatment of chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection in adults.

Bristol-Myers Squibb has announced that the European Commission has approved Daklinza (daclatasvir), a potent, pan-genotypic NS5A replication complex inhibitor (in vitro), for use in combination with other medicinal products across genotypes 1, 2, 3 and 4 for the treatment of chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection in adults.
Daklinza, when used in combination with sofosbuvir, is an all-oral, interferon-free regimen that provided cure rates of up to 100% in clinical trials, including patients with advanced liver disease, genotype 3 and those who have previously failed treatment with protease inhibitors. Daklinza is the first NS5A complex inhibitor approved in the European Union (EU) and will be available for use in combination with other medicinal products, providing a shorter treatment duration (12 or 24 weeks) compared with 48 weeks of treatment with interferon- and ribavirin-based regimens.
The approval allows for the marketing of Daklinza in all 28 Member States of the EU. The marketing authorisation for Daklinza follows an accelerated assessment by the Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use (CHMP), a designation that is granted to new medicines of major public health interest.
“HCV is a challenging virus to overcome, requiring multiple modes of attack. With the approval of Daklinza, we have a new class of drug that disrupts the virus in two ways – by inhibiting both viral replication and assembly – and when combined with other compounds often results in cure among even the hardest-to-treat patients,” said Michael P. Manns, MD, Professor and Chairman, Department of Gastroenterology, Hepatology, and Endocrinology, Hannover Medical School, Hannover, Germany.
Of the estimated nine million people living with HCV in the EU, genotype 1 is the most common genotype, though distribution varies across the region. The burden of liver disease and other morbidities from HCV infection is significant in Europe, where HCV accounts for 63% of liver transplants among patients with virus-related liver disease. Patient populations with high unmet needs include those with advanced liver disease, protease inhibitor failure, genotype 3, HIV co-infected patients and those who have undergone liver transplant.
“The eradication of HCV is in sight, and with today’s approval, Daklinza, in combination with other agents, will be an important option to achieve cure across many HCV genotypes and patient types for those in the EU who are in dire need of new treatment choices,” said Emmanuel Blin, Head of Worldwide Commercialization, Bristol-Myers Squibb.
“We are proud to have discovered, developed and now brought to market this first-in-class NS5A replication complex inhibitor. We look forward to our continued work with EU health authorities to ensure Daklinza-based regimens are available to patients as quickly as possible.”
The approval of Daklinza is supported by data from multiple studies, including an open-label, randomised study of Daklinza with sofosbuvir in genotypes 1, 2, and 3, including patients with no response to prior therapy with telaprevir or boceprevir and patients with fibrosis. Results showed that a regimen of Daklinza with sofosbuvir achieved SVR12 (sustained virological response 12 weeks after the end of treatment; a functional cure) in 99% of treatment-naïve patients with HCV genotype 1, 100% of patients with genotype 1 who had failed treatment with either telaprevir or boceprevir, 96% of those with genotype 2 and 89% of those with genotype 3.
In addition, the regimen resulted in low rates of discontinuation (<1%) due to adverse events (AEs). The rate of serious AEs (SAEs) was low (4.7%). The most common adverse events were fatigue, headache and nausea. Across clinical studies, Daklinza-based regimens have been generally well tolerated with low rates of discontinuation across a range of patients. Ongoing and completed Daklinza studies have included more than 5,500 patients in a variety of all-oral regimens and with the current interferon-based standard of care.
The safety of Daklinza for the treatment of hepatitis C has been demonstrated in diverse patient populations that include elderly patients, patients with advanced liver disease, post-liver transplant recipients and patients co-infected with HIV. No unique safety concerns have been identified in patients who were treated with Daklinza across clinical studies and in the early access programme. Several of these studies are ongoing.
If the patient has HCV RNA undetectable at both treatment weeks 4 and 12, all three components of the regimen should be continued for a total duration of 24 weeks. If the patient achieves HCV RNA undetectable, but not at both treatment weeks 4 and 12, Daklinza should be discontinued at 24 weeks and peginterferon alfa and ribavirin continued for a total duration of 48 weeks.
Daklinza monotherapy is not recommended. The Summary of Product Characteristics will be available at www.ema.europa.eu. Commercial availability of Daklinza in the EU will be determined by individual Member States.



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