Vertex applies to expand indication of cystic fibrosis drug

pharmafile | May 20, 2021 | News story | |  EMA, MHRA, cystic fibrosis 

Vertex has announced that the EMA and MHRA have validated the post marketing applications for an expanded indication of Kaftiro (ivacaftor/tezacaftor/elexacaftor), used in combination with ivacaftor, to include patients ages six years and older who have at least one F508del mutation in the cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR) gene.

If approved, up to 2,000 children with cystic fibrosis (CF) would be eligible for the triple combination therapy in the EU and the UK.

The applications are supported by positive results from a Phase III open-label study that evaluated the safety and efficacy of ivacaftor/tezacaftor/elexacaftor plus ivacaftor in 66 children ages 6 through 11 years old who have either two copies of the F508del mutation or one copy of the F508del mutation and one minimal function mutation.

Nia Tatsis, PhD, Executive VP, Chief Regulatory and Quality Officer, said: “We are committed to working diligently with global regulators to expand the indication for our medicine such that younger people living with CF will also be able to access the triple combination therapy.

“Today’s news is an important milestone in broadening our access worldwide and we are pleased that we were able to file with the EMA and the MHRA in parallel.”             

In April the European Commission granted approval of the label extension for Kaftiro in a combination regimen with ivacaftor 150mg for the treatment of CF in patients ages 12 years and older who have at least one F508del mutation in the CFTR gene, and in May MHRA approved the same label for patients in Great Britain.

CF is a progressive, multi-system disease that affects the lungs, liver, GI tract, sinuses, sweat glands, pancreas, and reproductive tract. It is caused by a defective and/or missing CFTR protein resulting from certain mutations in the CFTR gene. Children must inherit two defective CFTR genes — one from each parent — to have CF. While there are many different types of CFTR mutations that can cause the disease, the vast majority of all people with CF have at least one F508del mutation.

The defective function and/or absence of CFTR protein results in poor flow of salt and water into and out of the cells in a number of organs. In the lungs, this leads to the build-up of sticky mucus that can cause chronic lung infections and progressive lung damage in many patients, that eventually leads to death. The median age of death is in the early 30s.

Kat Jenkins 

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