Company Announcements

IMFINZI and IMJUDO with chemotherapy approved in the US for patients with metastatic non-small cell lung cancer

Approval based on POSEIDON Phase III trial results, which showed significant survival benefit with a limited course of IMJUDO added to IMFINZI and chemotherapy

WILMINGTON, Del.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Nov. 11, 2022-- AstraZeneca’s IMFINZI® (durvalumab) in combination with IMJUDO®(tremelimumab) plus platinum-based chemotherapy has been approved in the US for the treatment of adult patients with Stage IV (metastatic) non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC).

The approval by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) was based on the results from the POSEIDON Phase III trial. Patients treated with a limited course of five cycles of the anti-CTLA-4 antibody IMJUDO added to IMFINZI plus four cycles of platinum-based chemotherapy experienced a 23% reduction in the risk of death versus a range of chemotherapy options (based on a hazard ratio [HR] of 0.77; 95% CI 0.65-0.92; p=0.00304). An estimated 33% of patients were alive at two years versus 22% for chemotherapy. This treatment combination also reduced the risk of disease progression or death by 28% compared to chemotherapy alone (HR 0.72; 95% CI 0.60-0.86; p=0.00031).

Updated results from the POSEIDON Phase III trial after approximately four years of follow-up presented at the European Society of Medical Oncology (ESMO) Congress 2022 and published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology demonstrated sustained survival benefit, improving overall survival (OS) by 25% compared to chemotherapy alone (HR 0.75; 95% CI 0.63-0.88). An estimated 25% of patients treated with the combination were alive at three years versus 13.6% for those treated with chemotherapy alone. The safety profile for IMJUDOplus IMFINZI and chemotherapy was consistent with the known profiles of each medicine, and no new safety signals were identified.

In the US, lung cancer is the second most commonly diagnosed cancer, with more than 236,000 patients expected to be diagnosed in 2022.1 For patients with metastatic NSCLC, prognosis is particularly poor, as only approximately 8% will live beyond five years after diagnosis.2

Melissa Johnson, MD, Director of Lung Cancer Research, Sarah Cannon Research Institute at Tennessee Oncology in Nashville, Tennessee, and a lead investigator in the POSEIDON Phase III trial, said: “Metastatic non-small cell lung cancer remains a significant treatment challenge because many patients’ tumors do not respond well to standard therapies, including checkpoint inhibitors. The approval of this dual immunotherapy regimen with chemotherapy introduces a new, generally well-tolerated treatment option for patients with this devastating disease and gives them the chance to benefit from the long-term survival advantage seen with CTLA-4 inhibition.”

Dave Fredrickson, Executive Vice President, Oncology Business Unit, AstraZeneca, said: “This approval underscores the importance of delivering novel treatment combinations that extend survival in metastatic non-small cell lung cancer, a complex setting where many patients still face a dismal prognosis. This marks the second indication for IMJUDO added to IMFINZI in just a few weeks following its approval in unresectable liver cancer, reinforcing the benefits of this new medicine and our commitment to improving patient outcomes in cancer settings with continued unmet need.”

Regulatory applications are also currently under review in Europe, Japan and several other countries for this indication based on the POSEIDON results.

IMFINZIis the only approved immunotherapy and the global standard of care in the curative-intent setting of unresectable, Stage III NSCLC in patients whose disease has not progressed after chemoradiation therapy based on the PACIFIC Phase III trial. IMFINZIis also approved in the US, the EU, Japan, China and many other countries around the world for the treatment of extensive-stage small cell lung cancer (ES-SCLC) based on the CASPIAN Phase III trial. IMFINZI is approved in the US and several other countries in combination with chemotherapy for the treatment of locally advanced or metastatic biliary tract cancer based on the TOPAZ-1 Phase III trial, and it is approved with IMJUDOin the US for the treatment of unresectable hepatocellular carcinoma based on the HIMALAYA Phase III trial.

IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION

There are no contraindications for IMFINZI® (durvalumab) or IMJUDO® (tremelimumab-actl).

Severe and Fatal Immune-Mediated Adverse Reactions

Important immune-mediated adverse reactions listed under Warnings and Precautions may not include all possible severe and fatal immune-mediated reactions. Immune-mediated adverse reactions, which may be severe or fatal, can occur in any organ system or tissue. Immune-mediated adverse reactions can occur at any time after starting treatment or after discontinuation. Monitor patients closely for symptoms and signs that may be clinical manifestations of underlying immune-mediated adverse reactions. Evaluate clinical chemistries including liver enzymes, creatinine, adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) level, and thyroid function at baseline and before each dose. In cases of suspected immune-mediated adverse reactions, initiate appropriate workup to exclude alternative etiologies, including infection. Institute medical management promptly, including specialty consultation as appropriate. Withhold or permanently discontinue IMFINZI and IMJUDO depending on severity. See USPI Dosing and Administration for specific details. In general, if IMFINZI and IMJUDO requires interruption or discontinuation, administer systemic corticosteroid therapy (1 mg to 2 mg/kg/day prednisone or equivalent) until improvement to Grade 1 or less. Upon improvement to Grade 1 or less, initiate corticosteroid taper and continue to taper over at least 1 month. Consider administration of other systemic immunosuppressants in patients whose immune-mediated adverse reactions are not controlled with corticosteroid therapy.

Immune-Mediated Pneumonitis

IMFINZI in combination with IMJUDO and platinum-based chemotherapy can cause immune-mediated pneumonitis, which may be fatal. Immune-mediated pneumonitis occurred in 3.5% (21/596) of patients, including fatal (0.5%), and Grade 3 (1%) adverse reactions.

Immune-Mediated Colitis

IMFINZI in combination with IMJUDO and platinum-based chemotherapy can cause immune-mediated colitis that is frequently associated with diarrhea. Cytomegalovirus (CMV) infection/reactivation has been reported in patients with corticosteroid-refractory immune-mediated colitis. In cases of corticosteroid-refractory colitis, consider repeating infectious workup to exclude alternative etiologies. Immune-mediated colitis occurred in 6.5% (39/596) of patients, including fatal (0.2%) and Grade 3 (2.5%) adverse reactions. Intestinal perforation and large intestine perforation were reported in 0.1% of patients receiving IMFINZI in combination with IMJUDO and platinum-based chemotherapy.

Immune-Mediated Hepatitis

IMFINZI in combination with IMJUDO and platinum-based chemotherapy can cause immune-mediated hepatitis, which may be fatal. Immune-mediated hepatitis occurred in 3.9% (23/596) of patients, including fatal (0.3%), Grade 4 (0.5%), and Grade 3 (2%) adverse reactions.

Immune-Mediated Endocrinopathies

  • Adrenal Insufficiency :IMFINZI in combination with IMJUDO and platinum-based chemotherapy can cause primary or secondary adrenal insufficiency. For Grade 2 or higher adrenal insufficiency, initiate symptomatic treatment, including hormone replacement as clinically indicated. Immune-mediated adrenal insufficiency occurred in 2.2% (13/596) of patients, including Grade 3 (0.8%) adverse reactions.
  • Hypophysitis :IMFINZI in combination with IMJUDO and platinum-based chemotherapy can cause immune-mediated hypophysitis. Hypophysitis can present with acute symptoms associated with mass effect such as headache, photophobia, or visual field cuts. Hypophysitis can cause hypopituitarism. Initiate symptomatic treatment including hormone replacement as clinically indicated. Immune-mediated hypophysitis occurred in 1.3% (8/596) of patients, including Grade 3 (0.5%) adverse reactions.
  • Thyroid Disorders (Thyroiditis, Hyperthyroidism, and Hypothyroidism) :IMFINZI in combination with IMJUDO and platinum-based chemotherapy can cause immune-mediated thyroid disorders. Thyroiditis can present with or without endocrinopathy. Hypothyroidism can follow hyperthyroidism. Initiate hormone replacement therapy for hypothyroidism or institute medical management of hyperthyroidism as clinically indicated.
    • Immune-mediated thyroiditis occurred in 1.2% (7/596) of patients.
    • Immune-mediated hyperthyroidism occurred in 5% (30/596) of patients, including Grade 3 (0.2%) adverse reactions.
    • Immune-mediated hypothyroidism occurred in 8.6% (51/596) of patients, including Grade 3 (0.5%) adverse reactions.
  • Type 1 Diabetes Mellitus, which can present with diabetic ketoacidosis : Monitor patients for hyperglycemia or other signs and symptoms of diabetes. Initiate treatment with insulin as clinically indicated. Immune-mediated Type 1 diabetes mellitus occurred in 0.5% (3/596) of patients receiving IMFINZI in combination with IMJUDO and platinum-based chemotherapy, including Grade 3 (0.3%) adverse reactions.

Immune-Mediated Nephritis with Renal Dysfunction

IMFINZI in combination with IMJUDO and platinum-based chemotherapy can cause immune-mediated nephritis. Immune-mediated nephritis occurred in 0.7% (4/596) of patients, including Grade 3 (0.2%) adverse reactions.

Immune-Mediated Dermatology Reactions

IMFINZI in combination with IMJUDO and platinum-based chemotherapy can cause immune-mediated rash or dermatitis. Exfoliative dermatitis, including Stevens-Johnson Syndrome (SJS), drug rash with eosinophilia and systemic symptoms (DRESS), and toxic epidermal necrolysis (TEN), have occurred with PD-1/L-1 and CTLA-4 blocking antibodies. Topical emollients and/or topical corticosteroids may be adequate to treat mild to moderate non-exfoliative rashes. Immune-mediated rash or dermatitis occurred in 7.2% (43/596) of patients, including Grade 3 (0.3%) adverse reactions.

Other Immune-Mediated Adverse Reactions

The following clinically significant, immune-mediated adverse reactions occurred at an incidence of less than 1% each in patients who received IMFINZI in combination with IMJUDO or were reported with the use of other immune-checkpoint inhibitors.

  • Cardiac/vascular : Myocarditis, pericarditis, vasculitis.
  • Nervous system : Meningitis, encephalitis, myelitis and demyelination, myasthenic syndrome/myasthenia gravis (including exacerbation), Guillain-Barré syndrome, nerve paresis, autoimmune neuropathy.
  • Ocular : Uveitis, iritis, and other ocular inflammatory toxicities can occur. Some cases can be associated with retinal detachment. Various grades of visual impairment to include blindness can occur. If uveitis occurs in combination with other immune-mediated adverse reactions, consider a Vogt-Koyanagi-Harada-like syndrome, as this may require treatment with systemic steroids to reduce the risk of permanent vision loss.
  • Gastrointestinal : Pancreatitis including increases in serum amylase and lipase levels, gastritis, duodenitis.
  • Musculoskeletal and connective tissue disorders : Myositis/polymyositis, rhabdomyolysis and associated sequelae including renal failure, arthritis, polymyalgia rheumatic.
  • Endocrine : Hypoparathyroidism.
  • Other (hematologic/immune) : Hemolytic anemia, aplastic anemia, hemophagocytic lymphohistiocytosis, systemic inflammatory response syndrome, histiocytic necrotizing lymphadenitis (Kikuchi lymphadenitis), sarcoidosis, immune thrombocytopenia, solid organ transplant rejection.

Infusion-Related Reactions

IMFINZI in combination with IMJUDO and platinum-based chemotherapy can cause severe or life-threatening infusion-related reactions. Monitor for signs and symptoms of infusion-related reactions. Interrupt, slow the rate of, or permanently discontinue IMFINZI and IMJUDO based on the severity. See USPI Dosing and Administration for specific details. For Grade 1 or 2 infusion-related reactions, consider using pre-medications with subsequent doses. Infusion-related reactions occurred in 2.9% (17/596) of patients, including Grade 3 (0.3%) adverse reactions.

Complications of Allogeneic HSCT after IMFINZI

Fatal and other serious complications can occur in patients who receive allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) before or after being treated with a PD-1/L-1 blocking antibody. Transplant-related complications include hyperacute graft-versus-host-disease (GVHD), acute GVHD, chronic GVHD, hepatic veno-occlusive disease (VOD) after reduced intensity conditioning, and steroid-requiring febrile syndrome (without an identified infectious cause). These complications may occur despite intervening therapy between PD-1/L-1 blockade and allogeneic HSCT. Follow patients closely for evidence of transplant-related complications and intervene promptly. Consider the benefit versus risks of treatment with a PD-1/L-1 blocking antibody prior to or after an allogeneic HSCT.

Embryo-Fetal Toxicity

Based on their mechanism of action and data from animal studies, IMFINZI and IMJUDO can cause fetal harm when administered to a pregnant woman. Advise pregnant women of the potential risk to a fetus. In females of reproductive potential, verify pregnancy status prior to initiating IMFINZI and IMJUDO and advise them to use effective contraception during treatment with IMFINZI and IMJUDO and for 3 months after the last dose of IMFINZI and IMJUDO.

Lactation

There is no information regarding the presence of IMFINZI and IMJUDO in human milk; however, because of the potential for serious adverse reactions in breastfed infants from IMFINZI and IMJUDO, advise women not to breastfeed during treatment and for 3 months after the last dose.

Adverse Reactions

  • In patients with mNSCLC in the POSEIDON study receiving IMFINZI in combination with IMJUDO and platinum-based chemotherapy (n=330), the most common adverse reactions (occurring in ≥20% of patients) were nausea (42%), fatigue (36%), musculoskeletal pain (29%), decreased appetite (28%), rash (27%), and diarrhea (22%).
  • In patients with mNSCLC in the POSEIDON study receiving IMFINZI in combination with IMJUDO and platinum-based chemotherapy (n=330), permanent discontinuation of IMFINZI or IMJUDO due to an adverse reaction occurred in 17% of patients. Serious adverse reactions occurred in 44% of patients, with the most frequent serious adverse reactions reported in at least 2% of patients being pneumonia (11%), anemia (5%), diarrhea (2.4%), thrombocytopenia (2.4%), pyrexia (2.4%), and febrile neutropenia (2.1%). Fatal adverse reactions occurred in a total of 4.2% of patients.

The safety and effectiveness of IMFINZI and IMJUDO have not been established in pediatric patients.

Indication:

IMFINZI, in combination with IMJUDO and platinum-based chemotherapy, is indicated for the treatment of adult patients with metastatic NSCLC with no sensitizing epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) mutations or anaplastic lymphoma kinase (ALK) genomic tumor aberrations.

IMPORTANT PRODUCT INFORMATION

IMFINZI, in combination with IMJUDO and platinum-based chemotherapy, is indicated for the treatment of adult patients with metastatic NSCLC with no sensitizing epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) mutations or anaplastic lymphoma kinase (ALK) genomic tumor aberrations.

Immune-mediated adverse reactions, which may be severe or fatal, can occur in any organ system or tissue, including the following: immune-mediated pneumonitis, immune-mediated colitis, immune-mediated hepatitis, immune-mediated endocrinopathies, immune-mediated nephritis with renal dysfunction, immune-mediated dermatologic reactions, and solid organ transplant rejection. IMFINZI and IMJUDO can cause severe or life-threatening infusion-related reactions. Fatal and other serious complications can occur in patients who receive allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) before or after being treat with a PD-1/PD-L1 blocking antibody.

Advise women not to become pregnant or breastfeed during treatment with IMFINZI and IMJUDO and for 3 months after the last dose.

The most frequent serious adverse reactions reported in at least 2% of patients with metastatic NSCLC were pneumonia (11%), anemia (5%), diarrhea (2.4%), thrombocytopenia (2.4%), pyrexia (2.4%), and febrile neutropenia (2.1%).

The most common adverse reactions (≥20% of patients with metastatic NSCLC) were nausea (42%), fatigue (36%), musculoskeletal pain (29%), decreased appetite (28%), rash (27%), and diarrhea (22%).

The safety and effectiveness of IMFINZI and IMJUDO have not been established in pediatric patients.

Please see Full Prescribing Information including Medication Guide for IMFINZI and IMJUDO.

Notes

Stage IV NSCLC

Lung cancer is the second most common form of cancer globally, with more than two million patients diagnosed in 2020.3 Lung cancer is broadly split into NSCLC and SCLC, with 80-85% classified as NSCLC. Within NSCLC, patients are classified as squamous, representing 25-30% of patients, or non-squamous, in approximately 70-75% of patients.4-6

POSEIDON

The POSEIDON trial was a randomized, open-label, multi-center, global, Phase III trial of IMFINZIplus platinum-based chemotherapy, or IMFINZI, IMJUDO and chemotherapy, versus chemotherapy alone in the 1st-line treatment of 1,013 patients with metastatic NSCLC. The trial population included patients with either non-squamous or squamous disease, and the full range of PD-L1 expression levels. POSEIDON excluded patients with certain epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) mutations or anaplastic lymphoma kinase (ALK) fusions.

In the experimental arms, patients were treated with a flat dose of 1,500mg of IMFINZI, or IMFINZIand 75mg of IMJUDO with up to four cycles of chemotherapy every three weeks, followed by maintenance treatment with IMFINZIonce every four weeks, or IMFINZI and a fifth dose of 75mg of IMJUDO given at week 16. In comparison, the control arm allowed up to six cycles of chemotherapy. Pemetrexed maintenance treatment was allowed in all arms in patients with non-squamous disease if given during the induction phase. Nearly all patients with non-squamous disease (95.5%) had pemetrexed and platinum, while the majority of patients with squamous disease receiving chemotherapy (88.3%) received gemcitabine and platinum.

Primary endpoints included progression-free survival (PFS) and OS for the IMFINZI plus chemotherapy arm. Key secondary endpoints included PFS and OS in the IMFINZIplus IMJUDO and chemotherapy arm. As both PFS endpoints were met for IMFINZI plus chemotherapy and IMFINZI, IMJUDO and chemotherapy, the prespecified statistical analysis plan allowed for testing OS in the IMFINZIplus IMJUDO and chemotherapy arm. The trial was conducted in more than 150 centers across 18 countries, including the US, Europe, South America, Asia and South Africa.

IMFINZI

IMFINZI®(durvalumab) is a human monoclonal antibody that binds to the PD-L1 protein and blocks the interaction of PD-L1 with the PD-1 and CD80 proteins, countering the tumor's immune-evading tactics and releasing the inhibition of immune responses.

In addition to its approved indications in lung cancer, IMFINZI is also the only approved immunotherapy in unresectable or metastatic biliary tract cancer and hepatocellular carcinoma (in combination with IMJUDO), and is also approved for previously treated patients with advanced bladder cancer in several countries.

As part of a broad development program, IMFINZIis being tested as a single treatment and in combinations with other anti-cancer treatments for patients with SCLC, NSCLC, bladder cancer, several gastrointestinal (GI) cancers, ovarian cancer, endometrial cancer and other solid tumors.

IMJUDO

IMJUDO®(tremelimumab) is a human monoclonal antibody that targets the activity of cytotoxic T-lymphocyte-associated protein 4 (CTLA-4). IMJUDO blocks the activity of CTLA-4, contributing to T-cell activation, priming the immune response to cancer and fostering cancer cell death.

IMJUDOis also approved in combination with IMFINZIfor the treatment of unresectable hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) and is being tested in combination with IMFINZIacross multiple tumor types including locoregional HCC (EMERALD-3), SCLC (ADRIATIC) and bladder cancer (VOLGA and NILE).

AstraZeneca in lung cancer

AstraZeneca is working to bring patients with lung cancer closer to cure through the detection and treatment of early-stage disease, while also pushing the boundaries of science to improve outcomes in the resistant and advanced settings. By defining new therapeutic targets and investigating innovative approaches, the Company aims to match medicines to the patients who can benefit most.

The Company's comprehensive portfolio includes leading lung cancer medicines and the next wave of innovations, including osimertinib and gefitinib; IMFINZI(durvalumab) and IMJUDO(tremelimumab); fam-trastuzumab deruxtecan-nxki and datopotamab deruxtecan in collaboration with Daiichi Sankyo; savolitinib in collaboration with HUTCHMED; as well as a pipeline of potential new medicines and combinations across diverse mechanisms of action.

AstraZeneca is a founding member of the Lung Ambition Alliance, a global coalition working to accelerate innovation and deliver meaningful improvements for people with lung cancer, including and beyond treatment.

AstraZeneca in immuno-oncology (IO)

AstraZeneca has a comprehensive and diverse IO portfolio and pipeline anchored in immunotherapies designed to overcome evasion of the anti-tumor immune response and stimulate the body’s immune system to attack tumors.

AstraZeneca aims to reimagine cancer care and help transform outcomes for patients with IMFINZIas a single treatment and in combination with IMJUDO as well as other novel immunotherapies and modalities. The Company is also exploring next-generation immunotherapies like bispecific antibodies and therapeutics that harness different aspects of immunity to target cancer.

AstraZeneca is boldly pursuing an innovative clinical strategy to bring IO-based therapies that deliver long-term survival to new settings across a wide range of cancer types. With an extensive clinical program, the Company also champions the use of IO treatment in earlier disease stages, where there is the greatest potential for cure.

AstraZeneca in oncology

AstraZeneca is leading a revolution in oncology with the ambition to provide cures for cancer in every form, following the science to understand cancer and all its complexities to discover, develop and deliver life-changing medicines to patients.

The Company's focus is on some of the most challenging cancers. It is through persistent innovation that AstraZeneca has built one of the most diverse portfolios and pipelines in the industry, with the potential to catalyze changes in the practice of medicine and transform the patient experience.

AstraZeneca has the vision to redefine cancer care and, one day, eliminate cancer as a cause of death.

About AstraZeneca

AstraZeneca is a global, science-led biopharmaceutical company that focuses on the discovery, development, and commercialization of prescription medicines in Oncology, Rare Diseases, and BioPharmaceuticals, including Cardiovascular, Renal & Metabolism, and Respiratory & Immunology. Based in Cambridge, UK, AstraZeneca operates in over 100 countries and its innovative medicines are used by millions of patients worldwide. Please visit www.astrazeneca-us.com and follow the Company on Twitter @AstraZenecaUS.

References

  1. Lungevity. Lung Cancer Statistics. Available at: https://www.lungevity.org/for-supporters-advocates/lung-cancer-awareness/lung-cancer-statistics#1. Accessed November 2022.
  2. American Cancer Society. Lung Cancer Survival Rates. Available at: https://www.cancer.org/cancer/lung-cancer/detection-diagnosis-staging/survival-rates.html. Accessed November 2022.
  3. WHO. International Agency of Cancer Research. Lung Fact Sheet. Available at: https://gco.iarc.fr/today/data/factsheets/cancers/15-Lung-fact-sheet.pdf. Accessed November 2022.
  4. Abernethy AP, et al. Real-world first-line treatment and overall survival in non-small cell lung cancer without known EGFR mutations or ALK rearrangements in US community oncology setting. PLoS ONE. 2017;12(6):e0178420.
  5. Cheema PK, et al. Perspectives on treatment advances for stage III locally advanced unresectable non-small-cell lung cancer. Curr Oncol. 2019;26(1):37-42.
  6. Cancer.net. Lung Cancer - Non-Small Cell: Introduction. Available at: https://www.cancer.net/cancer-types/lung-cancer-non-small-cell/introduction. Accessed November 2022.

US-66738 Last Updated 11/22

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Source: AstraZeneca