Updated Results of Two Phase 2 Ibrutinib Studies in Patients with Mantle Cell
Lymphoma or Diffuse Large B-cell Lymphoma
SUNNYVALE, Calif., June 16, 2013
SUNNYVALE, Calif., June 16, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Pharmacyclics, Inc. (the
"Company") (Nasdaq: PCYC) today announced the results of two separate Phase 2
studies suggesting that ibrutinib, an investigational oral Bruton's tyrosine
kinase (BTK) inhibitor, showed efficacy when used as a monotherapy in patients
with relapsed/refractory mantle cell lymphoma (MCL) or diffuse large B-cell
lymphoma (DLBCL). Pharmacyclics sponsored both studies and is jointly
developing ibrutinib with Janssen Research & Development, LLC. The data were
presented today at the European Hematology Association (EHA) 18^th Annual
Congress in Stockholm, Sweden.
The findings presented at EHA for patients with MCL or DLBCL expand on the
results reported by investigators last year at the American Society of
Hematology Congress in December 2012. Ibrutinib was shown to achieve the
following key results among patients with relapsed/refractory MCL:
oAn overall response rate (ORR) of 68%, including a complete response (CR)
of 21% where all signs of cancer are gone, and a partial response (PR) of
oThe estimated median duration of response (DOR) in all responding patients
was 17.5 months. The median progression-free survival (PFS) was 13.9
months, and the median overall survival (OS) has not yet been reached, but
is estimated to be 58% at 18 months.
oTreatment-emergent adverse events (AEs) reported in greater than 20% of
patients included diarrhea (50%), fatigue (41%), nausea (31%), peripheral
edema (28%), dyspnea (27%), constipation (25%), upper respiratory tract
infection (23%), vomiting (23%) and decreased appetite (21%) and were
consistent with previously reported data. Only 8 patients discontinued due
to an AE.
Professor Simon Rule, Consultant Haematologist in the Department of
Haematology at the Derriford Hospital in Plymouth, United Kingdom, presented
the results of this study at the EHA Congress today. He explained, "To see
these results from a single agent among MCL patients is quite significant and
very promising. The fact that response rates continued to increase over time,
with no new safety signals, is particularly reassuring."
In the second study among relapsed/refractory DLBCL patients, investigators
examined whether ibrutinib would be more active in the Activated B-cell-like
(ABC) subtype of DLBCL compared to the Germinal Center B-cell-like (GCB)
subtype. The ABC subtype of DLBCL is dependent on the B-cell antigen receptor
(BCR) pathway, of which BTK is a key element. Ibrutinib selectively inhibits
BTK, with the aim of inhibiting malignant B-cell growth and proliferation.
Results of this study show that:
oPatients with the ABC subtype showed a preferential response to ibrutinib
monotherapy compared to those with the GCB subtype (ORR = 41% vs 5%,
respectively, p=0.007, Fisher's exact test).
oMedian overall survival (OS) was 9.7 months for the ABC subtype, compared
to 3.35 months for the GCB subtype.
oSafety data from 70 patients identified no new safety signals. Grade 3 or
higher AEs were seen in greater than 3% of patients and included fatigue
(9%), hyponatremia (9%), pneumonia (7%), dehydration (4%), and pleural
"These results indicated that ibrutinib monotherapy was an effective treatment
forsome study patients who had ABC-subtype DLBCL," noted presenting
investigator Sven de Vos, M.D., Ph.D., Associate Professor in the Department
of Medicine at the UCLA Medical Center, Los Angeles, U.S.A., who presented the
results at the EHA Congress today. "Given that patients with the ABC-subtype
of DLBCL are difficult to treat, these results are very promising." ^
Ibrutinib was designed to specifically target and selectively inhibit an
enzyme called BTK. BTK is a key mediator of at least three critical B-cell
pro-survival mechanisms occurring in parallel — regulation of apoptosis, cell
adhesion and cell migration and homing.
The effectiveness of ibrutinib alone or in combination with other treatments
is being studied in several B-cell malignancies, including chronic lymphocytic
leukemia/small lymphocytic lymphoma, mantle cell lymphoma, diffuse large
B-cell lymphoma, follicular lymphoma, Waldenstrom's macroglobulinemia and
multiple myeloma. To date 7 Phase III trials have been initiated with
ibrutinib and a total of 30 ongoing trials are currently registered on
http://www.clinicaltrials.gov/. Janssen Biotech, Inc. and Pharmacyclics
entered a collaboration and license agreement in December 2011 to co-develop
and co-commercialize ibrutinib.
About the MCL Study
111 patients with relapsed/refractory MCL were treated with ibrutinibin this
Phase 2 multicenter, open-label, study at 18 sites internationally and had
received a median of three prior therapies. Patients were divided into two
cohorts based on prior bortezomib exposure – either bortezomib-naive (n=63) or
bortezomib-exposed (n=48). Both groups received 560 mg of ibrutinib orally,
once a day until disease progression or no longer tolerated by the patient.
The primary endpoint of the study was ORR, with secondary endpoints being DOR,
PFS, OS and frequency and severity of AEs.
When a disease is described as 'relapsed', it means that it has returned after
an initial partial or total remission. 'Refractory' refers to cancer that
has become resistant to current treatment.
About the DLBCL Study
The DLBCL study was a Phase 2 multicenter, open-label, study. 70 patients with
relapsed/refractory DLBCL with a median of three prior therapies were
enrolled, all of whom underwent gene expression profiling to determine which
DLBCL subtype they had. All patients received ibrutinib 560 mg orally, once a
day, until disease progression or no longer tolerated by the patient. The
primary objective of the study was to assess ORR categorized by subtype.
Secondary objectives were to assess the safety and tolerability of ibrutinib
in people with DLBCL.
Pharmacyclics^® is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company focused on
developing and commercializing innovative small-molecule drugs for the
treatment of cancer and immune mediated diseases. Our mission and goal is to
build a viable biopharmaceutical company that designs, develops and
commercializes novel therapies intended to improve quality of life, increase
duration of life and resolve serious unmet medical healthcare needs; and to
identify promising product candidates based on scientific development
expertise, develop our products in a rapid, cost-efficient manner and pursue
commercialization and/or development with partners when and where appropriate.
Presently, Pharmacyclics has three product candidates in clinical development
and several preclinical molecules in lead optimization. The Company is
committed to high standards of ethics, scientific rigor, and operational
efficiency as it moves each of these programs to viable commercialization.
The Company is headquartered in Sunnyvale, California and is listed on NASDAQ
under the symbol PCYC. To learn more about how Pharmacyclics advances science
to improve human healthcare visit us at http://www.pharmacyclics.com.
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 PubMed Health. Relapse Definition. Available at:
Accessed November 19, 2012.
 PubMed Health. Refractory Cancer Definition. Available at:
Accessed November 19, 2012.
SOURCE Pharmacyclics, Inc.
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