Janssen Reveals New Drug in the Pipeline for Treatment of Advanced Soft Tissue Sarcoma

December 10, 2014

The FDA recieved a New Drug Application from Janssen Research & Development LLC this month. The drug, Yondelis (trabectedin) is a new treatment for patients with advanced soft tissue sarcoma (STS)– this includes liposarcoma and leiomyosarcoma subtypes, who have received prior chemotherapy including an anthracycline.

“We are particularly proud of this filing, as it represents our commitment to YONDELIS and the people it may help,” said Peter F. Lebowitz, M.D., Ph.D., Global Oncology Head, Janssen. “The advanced soft tissue sarcoma treatment landscape has been relatively stagnant for decades and it’s our hope that YONDELIS will be a new treatment option for people living with this aggressive disease.”

Janssen also announced plans to amend the protocol for the Phase 3 randomized, open-label study ET743-SAR-3007, on which the NDA submission is based. The protocol will be revised to offer patients who were randomized to the dacarbazine comparator arm the option of receiving trabectedin treatment at their physician’s discretion. This trial is evaluating the safety and efficacy of trabectedin versus dacarbazine for the treatment of advanced liposarcoma and leiomyosarcoma, the most common types of STS in adults, in more than 500 patients previously treated with an anthracycline and ifosfamide, or an anthracycline followed by one additional line of chemotherapy. Results of the study will be presented at a future date.

“Today, we are one step closer to our goal of making another treatment option available for people living with advanced soft tissue sarcoma,” said Denise Reinke, President and CEO of Sarcoma Alliance for Research through Collaboration. “People living with this type of cancer are in urgent need of new options to help treat their disease, and we welcome new medicines that may help make a difference in their lives.”

In related news, Janssen will be revising the current U.S. trabectedin expanded access program (EAP), ET743-SAR-3002, to allow entry of eligible patients with liposarcoma and leiomyosarcoma. The program was developed to provide trabectedin to eligible patients with previously treated STS who cannot be expected to benefit from limited currently available therapeutic options. Patient enrollment will be extended to those with liposarcoma or leiomyosarcoma as soon as the protocol amendment is implemented at participating sites. Interested patients should discuss the option of accessing trabectedin through the EAP with their physician to understand if this is an appropriate option for them.

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