Biotech

If approved, Onureg will become the first and only once daily oral frontline maintenance therapy in Europe for patients with a broad range of acute myeloid leukemia (AML) subtypes

In the pivotal QUAZAR ® AML-001 study, Onureg demonstrated significant overall survival and showed a relapse-free survival benefit in patients with AML in first remission

Bristol Myers Squibb (NYSE: BMY) today announced the Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use (CHMP) of the European Medicines Agency (EMA) has recommended approval of Onureg ® (azacitidine tablets; CC-486) as a maintenance therapy in adult patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) who achieved complete remission (CR) or complete remission with incomplete blood count recovery (CRi) following induction therapy with or without consolidation treatment and who are not candidates for, including those who choose not to proceed to, hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT).

The CHMP recommendation will now be reviewed by the European Commission (EC), which has the authority to approve medicines for the European Union (EU). If approved, Onureg will be the first and only once daily frontline oral maintenance therapy to demonstrate significant overall survival in patients with a broad range of AML subtypes in first remission.

The CHMP adopted a positive opinion based on results from the QUAZAR ® AML-001 study, a Phase 3, international, randomized, double-blind trial. Eligible patients were ages 55 years or older, had newly diagnosed AML, intermediate or poor cytogenetics, had achieved first CR or CRi following intensive induction chemotherapy with or without consolidation treatment (per investigator preference prior to study entry), and were not candidates for HSCT at the time of screening. 1

"Maintenance therapy options for acute myeloid leukemia that prolong overall survival have been urgently needed in Europe, especially oral options that can be taken at home. While many patients with acute myeloid leukemia achieve remission with induction therapy, responses to treatment may be of short duration and the risk of relapse remains high, especially for patients who are not eligible for stem cell transplant," said Noah Berkowitz, M.D., Ph.D., senior vice president, Hematology Development, Bristol Myers Squibb. "We look forward to the European Commission's decision and to making Onureg available to appropriate patients, building on our commitment to deliver innovative therapies that improve long-term outcomes for patients."

The EC is expected to deliver its final decision within 67 days of receipt of the CHMP opinion. The decision will be applicable to all EU member states and Iceland, Norway and Liechtenstein.*

Onureg is approved in the United States for the continued treatment of adult patients with AML who achieved first CR or CRi following intensive induction chemotherapy and who are not able to complete intensive curative therapy. 2 In Canada, Onureg is approved as a maintenance therapy for adult patients with AML who achieved CR or CRi following induction therapy with or without consolidation treatment, and who are not eligible for HSCT. 3

*Centralized Marketing Authorization does not include approval in Great Britain (England, Scotland and Wales).

About QUAZAR ® AML-001

QUAZAR ® AML-001, is a Phase 3, international, randomized, double-blind study. Eligible patients were ages 55 years or older, had newly diagnosed AML, intermediate or poor cytogenetics, had achieved first CR or CRi following intensive induction chemotherapy with or without consolidation treatment (per investigator preference prior to study entry) within four months before randomization, and were not candidates for HSCT at the time of screening. The study enrolled 472 patients, randomized 1:1 to receive either Onureg 300 mg (N=238) or placebo (N=234) orally, once daily, for 14 days of a 28-day cycle, plus best supportive care. 1

Median OS, the primary endpoint, from time of randomization was greater than two years (24.7 months; 95% CI: 18.7 to 30.5) in the Onureg arm compared to 14.8 months for placebo (HR: 0.69, 95% CI: 0.55 to 0.86; p=0.0009). A subgroup analysis showed consistency in the OS benefit for patients in either CR or CRi. The median duration of treatment was 12 cycles (1 to 82) for Onureg 1 and 6 cycles with placebo (1 to 76). 4

Serious adverse reactions occurred in 15% of patients who received Onureg . Serious adverse reactions in ≥2% of patients who received Onureg included pneumonia (8%) and febrile neutropenia (7%). One fatal adverse reaction (sepsis) occurred in a patient who received Onureg . The most common adverse reactions with Onureg versus placebo were nausea (65%, 24%), vomiting (60%, 10%), diarrhea (50%, 21%), fatigue/asthenia (44%, 25%), constipation (39%, 24%), pneumonia (27%, 17%), abdominal pain (22%, 13%) arthralgia (14%, 10%), decreased appetite (13%, 6%), febrile neutropenia (12%, 8%), dizziness (11%, 9%) and pain in extremity (11%, 5%). Of patients who received Onureg , permanent discontinuation due to an adverse reaction occurred in 8% of patients.

About AML

AML is one of the most common acute leukemias in adults. 5 The worldwide incidence of AML has been estimated at more than 350,000 cases, and the estimated 5-year survival rate for AML in Europe is 17%. 6 AML is characterized by the rapid growth of abnormal cells in the bone marrow and as such interferes with normal blood cell production and function. Because of the impaired production of red blood cells, platelets and white blood cells, it can present with signs of anemia, bleeding and infections. 5 AML is a heterogeneous disease associated with diverse genetic mutations, and can rapidly progress and lead to death if not promptly treated. 7

AML response to treatment may be of short duration, meaning following patients' initial response to chemotherapy, there is still a very high risk of relapse, thus representing a significant unmet need for maintenance treatment options that prolong overall survival. 8

About Onureg ®

Onureg , the first and only FDA-approved continued AML treatment for patients in first remission, is a once daily oral hypomethylating agent that incorporates into DNA and RNA. The main mechanism of action is thought to be hypomethylation of DNA, as well as direct cytotoxicity to abnormal hematopoietic cells in the bone marrow. Hypomethylation may restore normal function to genes that are critical for cell differentiation and proliferation. 9,10 Onureg is approved in the U.S. for continued treatment of adult patients with AML who achieved first CR or CRi following intensive induction chemotherapy and are not able to complete intensive curative therapy. Onureg is also approved in Canada as maintenance therapy for adult patients with AML who achieved CR or CRi following induction therapy with or without consolidation treatment, and who are not eligible for HSCT.

U.S. IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION

CONTRAINDICATIONS

  • ONUREG is contraindicated in patients with known severe hypersensitivity to azacitidine or its components.

WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS

  • Risks of Substitution with Other Azacitidine Products: Due to substantial differences in the pharmacokinetic parameters, the recommended dose and schedule for ONUREG are different from those for the intravenous or subcutaneous azacitidine products. Treatment of patients using intravenous or subcutaneous azacitidine at the recommended dosage of ONUREG may result in a fatal adverse reaction. Treatment with ONUREG at the doses recommended for intravenous or subcutaneous azacitidine may not be effective. Do not substitute ONUREG for intravenous or subcutaneous azacitidine.
  • Myelosuppression: New or worsening Grade 3 or 4 neutropenia and thrombocytopenia occurred in 49% and 22% of patients who received ONUREG. Febrile neutropenia occurred in 12%. A dose reduction was required for 7% and 2% of patients due to neutropenia and thrombocytopenia. Less than 1% of patients discontinued ONUREG due to either neutropenia or thrombocytopenia. Monitor complete blood counts and modify the dosage as recommended. Provide standard supportive care, including hematopoietic growth factors, if myelosuppression occurs.
  • Increased Early Mortality in Patients with Myelodysplastic Syndromes (MDS): In AZA-MDS-003, 216 patients with red blood cell transfusion-dependent anemia and thrombocytopenia due to MDS were randomized to ONUREG or placebo. 107 received a median of 5 cycles of ONUREG 300 mg daily for 21 days of a 28-day cycle. Enrollment was discontinued early due to a higher incidence of early fatal and/or serious adverse reactions in the ONUREG arm compared with placebo. The most frequent fatal adverse reaction was sepsis. Safety and effectiveness of ONUREG for MDS have not been established. Treatment of MDS with ONUREG is not recommended outside of controlled trials.
  • Embryo-Fetal Toxicity: ONUREG can cause fetal harm when administered to a pregnant woman. Azacitidine caused fetal death and anomalies in pregnant rats via a single intraperitoneal dose less than the recommended human daily dose of oral azacitidine on a mg/m2 basis. Advise pregnant women of the potential risk to a fetus. Advise females of reproductive potential to use effective contraception during treatment with ONUREG and for at least 6 months after the last dose. Advise males with female partners of reproductive potential to use effective contraception during treatment with ONUREG and for at least 3 months after the last dose.

ADVERSE REACTIONS

  • Serious adverse reactions occurred in 15% of patients who received ONUREG. Serious adverse reactions in ≥2% included pneumonia (8%) and febrile neutropenia (7%). One fatal adverse reaction (sepsis) occurred in a patient who received ONUREG.
  • Most common (≥10%) adverse reactions with ONUREG vs placebo were nausea (65%, 24%), vomiting (60%, 10%), diarrhea (50%, 21%), fatigue/asthenia (44%, 25%), constipation (39%, 24%), pneumonia (27%, 17%), abdominal pain (22%, 13%), arthralgia (14%, 10%), decreased appetite (13%, 6%), febrile neutropenia (12%, 8%), dizziness (11%, 9%), pain in extremity (11%, 5%).

LACTATION

  • There are no data regarding the presence of azacitidine in human milk or the effects on the breastfed child or milk production. Because of the potential for serious adverse reactions in the breastfed child, advise women not to breastfeed during treatment with ONUREG and for 1 week after the last dose

Please see full Prescribing Information for ONUREG.

Bristol Myers Squibb: Creating a Better Future for People with Cancer

Bristol Myers Squibb is inspired by a single vision—transforming patients' lives through science. The goal of the company's cancer research is to deliver medicines that offer each patient a better, healthier life and to make cure a possibility. Building on a legacy across a broad range of cancers that have changed survival expectations for many, Bristol Myers Squibb researchers are exploring new frontiers in personalized medicine, and through innovative digital platforms, are turning data into insights that sharpen their focus. Deep scientific expertise, cutting-edge capabilities and discovery platforms enable the company to look at cancer from every angle. Cancer can have a relentless grasp on many parts of a patient's life, and Bristol Myers Squibb is committed to taking actions to address all aspects of care, from diagnosis to survivorship. Because as a leader in cancer care, Bristol Myers Squibb is working to empower all people with cancer to have a better future.

About Bristol Myers Squibb

Bristol Myers Squibb is a global biopharmaceutical company whose mission is to discover, develop and deliver innovative medicines that help patients prevail over serious diseases. For more information about Bristol Myers Squibb, visit us at BMS.com or follow us on LinkedIn , Twitter , YouTube , Facebook and Instagram .

Celgene and Juno Therapeutics are wholly owned subsidiaries of Bristol-Myers Squibb Company. In certain countries outside the U.S., due to local laws, Celgene and Juno Therapeutics are referred to as, Celgene, a Bristol Myers Squibb company and Juno Therapeutics, a Bristol Myers Squibb company.

Bristol Myers Squibb Cautionary Statement Regarding Forward-Looking Statements

This press release contains "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 regarding, among other things, the research, development and commercialization of pharmaceutical products. All statements that are not statements of historical facts are, or may be deemed to be, forward-looking statements. Such forward-looking statements are based on historical performance and current expectations and projections about our future financial results, goals, plans and objectives and involve inherent risks, assumptions and uncertainties, including internal or external factors that could delay, divert or change any of them in the next several years, that are difficult to predict, may be beyond our control and could cause our future financial results, goals, plans and objectives to differ materially from those expressed in, or implied by, the statements. These risks, assumptions, uncertainties and other factors include, among others, that the CHMP is not binding on the EC, that Onureg may not receive regulatory approval for the additional indication described in this release in the currently anticipated timeline or at all and, if approved, whether such product candidate for such additional indication described in this release will be commercially successful. No forward-looking statement can be guaranteed. Forward-looking statements in this press release should be evaluated together with the many risks and uncertainties that affect Bristol Myers Squibb's business and market, particularly those identified in the cautionary statement and risk factors discussion in Bristol Myers Squibb's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2020, as updated by our subsequent Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q, Current Reports on Form 8-K and other filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The forward-looking statements included in this document are made only as of the date of this document and except as otherwise required by applicable law, Bristol Myers Squibb undertakes no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future events, changed circumstances or otherwise.

References:

  1. Clinical Trials.gov. Efficacy of Oral Azacitidine Plus Best Supportive Care as Maintenance Therapy in Subjects With Acute Myeloid Leukemia in Complete Remission (QUAZAR AML-001). Available at https://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT01757535 . Accessed February 2021.
  2. ONUREG U.S. Prescribing Information. Accessed February 2021.
  3. ONUREG Canada Product Monograph. Accessed January 2021.
  4. Data on File. Princeton, NJ: Bristol-Myers Squibb Company. 2020.
  5. American Cancer Society. What is AML?. https://www.cancer.org/cancer/acute-myeloid-leukemia/about/what-is-aml.html . Accessed on: July 23, 2020.
  6. Maynadie et al. Haematologica . 2013 Feb; 98(2): 230–238.
  7. Int J Hematol Oncol Stem Cell Res. Acute Myeloid Leukemia—Genetic Alterations and Their Clinical Prognosis. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5767295/ .
  8. Leukaemia Care. Relapse in Acute Myeloid Leukaemia (AML). https://media.leukaemiacare.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/Relapse-in-Acute-Myeloid-Leukaemia-AML-Web-Version.pdf . Accessed on July 23, 2020.
  9. Laille et al. PLoS One . 2015;10(8):e0135520
  10. Garcia-Manero et al. J Clin Oncol. 2011;29(18):2521–7


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The law firm of Kessler Topaz Meltzer & Check, LLP (www.ktmc.com) informs investors that the firm has filed a securities class action lawsuit against ABBVie, Inc. (ABBVie) (NYSE: ABBV) on behalf of all persons and entities who purchased or otherwise acquired ABBVie securities between April 30, 2021, and August 31, 2021, inclusive (the "Class Period").

CLICK HERE TO SUBMIT YOUR ABBVIE LOSSES. YOU CAN ALSO CLICK ON THEFOLLOWING LINK OR COPY AND PASTE IN YOUR BROWSER: https://www.ktmc.com/new-cases/abbvie-inc?utm_source=PR&utm_medium=link&utm_campaign=abbvie&mktm=r

TO VIEW OUR COMPLAINT, PLEASE CLICK HERE

LEAD PLAINTIFF DEADLINE:JUNE 6, 2022
CLASS PERIOD: APRIL 30, 2021 through AUGUST 31, 2021

CONTACT AN ATTORNEY TO DISCUSS YOUR RIGHTS:
James Maro, Esq. (484) 270-1453 or Email at info@ktmc.com

Kessler Topaz is one of the world's foremost advocates in protecting the public against corporate fraud and other wrongdoing. Our securities fraud litigators are regularly recognized as leaders in the field individually and our firm is both feared and respected among the defense bar and the insurance bar. We are proud to have recovered billions of dollars for our clients and the classes of shareholders we represent.

ABBVIE'S ALLEGED MISCONDUCT

AbbVie is one of the world's largest pharmaceutical companies. The company's revenues will come under significant pressure in the coming years when its best-selling drug, Humira, will lose patent protection in 2023. Accordingly, AbbVie's future revenue and earnings depend in large part on its ability to develop new sources of revenue to offset Humira's lost sales. Rinvoq-an anti-inflammatory drug manufactured by AbbVie and used to treat rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and other diseases by inhibiting Janus kinase (JAK) enzymes-was touted as one such drug. Rinvoq was initially approved in the United States to treat only moderate to severe RA. However, AbbVie was actively pursuing additional treatment indications and, in 2020, asked the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to approve Rinvoq for the treatment of several other diseases.

As is relevant here, Rinvoq is similar to other JAK inhibitor drugs, including Xeljanz, manufactured by Pfizer Inc. When the FDA approved Xeljanz in 2012 for the treatment of RA, it required an additional safety trial to evaluate Xeljanz's risk of triggering certain serious side effects. Beginning in February 2019, the FDA repeatedly warned the public that the safety trial indicated that Xeljanz's use could lead to serious heart-related issue, cancer, and other adverse events. Notwithstanding the similarities between Rinvoq and Xeljanz, during the Class Period, Defendants assured investors that Rinvoq was far safer than Xeljanz and not subject to the same regulatory risks.

However, investors began to learn the truth about Rinvoq's significant risks on June 25, 2021, when AbbVie revealed that the FDA was delaying its review of expanded treatment applications for Rinvoq due to the safety concerns associated with Xeljanz. On this news, the price of AbbVie common stock declined $1.76 per share, or approximately 1.5%, from a close of $114.74 per share on June 24, 2021, to close at $112.98 per share on June 25, 2021.

Then, on September 1, 2021, the FDA announced that final results from the Xeljanz safety trial established an increased risk of serious adverse events, even with low doses of Xeljanz. As a result, the FDA determined that it would require new and updated warnings for Xeljanz and Rinvoq because Rinvoq "share[s] similar mechanisms of action with Xeljanz" and "may have similar risks as seen in the Xeljanz safety trial." The FDA also indicated that it would further limit approved indications for Rinvoq as a result of these safety concerns. On this news, the price of AbbVie common stock declined $8.51 per share, or more than 7%, from a close of $120.78 per share on August 31, 2021, to close at $112.27 per share on September 1, 2021.

After the Class Period, on December 3, 2021, AbbVie announced that the FDA had updated Rinvoq's label to require additional safety warnings and limit marketing of Rinvoq to only its use after treatment with other drugs has failed. On January 11, 2022, Defendants admitted that these changes to Rinvoq's label would negatively impact sales, forcing the Company to reduce its long-term guidance for Rinvoq's sales in 2025.

The complaint alleges that, throughout the Class Period, the Defendants made materially false and/or misleading statements, about the company's business and operations. Specifically, Defendants misrepresented and/or failed to disclose that: (1) safety concerns about Xeljanz extended to Rinvoq and other JAK inhibitors; (2) as a result, it was likely that the FDA would require additional safety warnings for Rinvoq and would delay the approval of additional treatment indications for Rinvoq; and (3) therefore, Defendants' statements about the company's business, operations, and prospects lacked a reasonable basis, As a result of the Defendants' wrongful acts and omissions, and the significant decline in the market value of AbbVie's securities, AbbVie investors have suffered significant damages.

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AbbVieinvestors may, no later than June 6, 2022, seek to be appointed as a lead plaintiff representative of the class through Kessler Topaz Meltzer & Check, LLP or other counsel, or may choose to do nothing and remain an absent class member. Kessler Topaz Meltzer & Check, LLP encourages AbbVie investors who have suffered significant losses to contact the firm directly to acquire more information.

CLICK HERE TO SIGN UP FOR THE CASE

WHO CAN BE A LEAD PLAINTIFF?

A lead plaintiff is a representative party who acts on behalf of all class members in directing the litigation. The lead plaintiff is usually the investor or small group of investors who have the largest financial interest and who are also adequate and typical of the proposed class of investors. The lead plaintiff selects counsel to represent the lead plaintiff and the class and these attorneys, if approved by the court, are lead or class counsel. Your ability to share in any recovery is not affected by the decision of whether or not to serve as a lead plaintiff.

ABOUT KESSLER TOPAZ MELTZER & CHECK, LLP

Kessler Topaz Meltzer & Check, LLP prosecutes class actions in state and federal courts throughout the country and around the world. The firm has developed a global reputation for excellence and has recovered billions of dollars for victims of fraud and other corporate misconduct. All of our work is driven by a common goal: to protect investors, consumers, employees and others from fraud, abuse, misconduct and negligence by businesses and fiduciaries. For more information about Kessler Topaz Meltzer & Check, LLP please visit www.ktmc.com.

CONTACT:

Kessler Topaz Meltzer & Check, LLP
James Maro, Jr., Esq.
280 King of Prussia Road
Radnor, PA 19087
(484) 270-1453
info@ktmc.com

To view the source version of this press release, please visit https://www.newsfilecorp.com/release/124414

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