AstraZeneca’s Imfinzi (durvalumab) and Imjudo (tremelimumab) immunotherapy combinations have been approved in the European Union (EU) for the treatment of advanced liver and lung cancers.
The approvals authorise Imfinzi in combination with Imjudo for the 1st-line treatment of adult patients with advanced or unresectable hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) and Imfinzi in combination with Imjudo and platinum-based chemotherapy for the treatment of adult patients with metastatic (Stage IV) non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC).
The two approvals by the European Commission follow positive recommendations by The Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use of the European Medicines Agency in December 2022 and are based on positive results from the HIMALAYA Phase III trial, published in the New England Journal of Medicine Evidence and the POSEIDON Phase III trial, published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.
Bruno Sangro, MD, PhD, director of the Liver Unit and professor of Internal Medicine at Clínica Universidad de Navarra, and a lead investigator in the HIMALAYA Phase III trial, said: “This approval in Europe is welcome news for eligible patients with advanced liver cancer, who face a poor prognosis and are in need of well-tolerated treatments that can meaningfully extend overall survival. In HIMALAYA, an estimated 31% of patients treated with this novel combination of tremelimumab with durvalumab were alive at three years, while only 20% of patients treated with sorafenib were still alive at the same duration of follow-up.”
Solange Peters, MD, PhD, head of the Medical Oncology Service and chair of Thoracic Oncology at Hospitalier Universitaire Vaudois, Lausanne, Switzerland, and principal investigator in the POSEIDON Phase III trial, said: “Patients with metastatic non-small cell lung cancer continue to need new therapies that can meaningfully extend survival, including for many patients whose disease does not respond to current therapies. The approval of tremelimumab added to durvalumab and chemotherapy means that patients in Europe with this devastating cancer now have a valuable new treatment approach with demonstrated long-term survival benefits.”
Dave Fredrickson, executive vice president, Oncology Business Unit, AstraZeneca, said: “Lung cancer is one of the most prevalent and deadly cancers in Europe, and rates of liver cancer are rising steadily across the region. These approvals for Imfinzi and Imjudo bring critically needed, novel immunotherapy-based treatment regimens that will potentially deliver life-extending benefits for European patients with advanced liver and non-small cell lung cancers.”