Eisai Co., Ltd. (Headquarters: Tokyo, CEO: Haruo Naito, “Eisai”) announced that the China Food and Drug Administration (CFDA) has accepted for review a New Drug Application (NDA) submitted for Eisai’s in-house discovered and developed anticancer agent lenvatinib mesylate (product names: Lenvima® / Kisplyx®, “lenvatinib”) for use in the treatment of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) in China.
The NDA was based on the results of the REFLECT study (Study 304), a multicenter, open-label, randomized, global Phase III trial comparing the efficacy and safety of lenvatinib versus sorafenib, a standard treatment for HCC, as a first-line treatment for the patients with unresectable HCC.
In the REFLECT study, lenvatinib demonstrated a treatment effect on the primary endpoint of Overall Survival (OS) by the statistical confirmation of non-inferiority to sorafenib. Additionally, lenvatinib showed highly statistically significant and clinically meaningful improvements compared to sorafenib in the secondary endpoints of Progression Free Survival (PFS), Time To Progression (TTP), and Objective Response Rate (ORR). In this study, the five most common adverse events observed in the lenvatinib arm were hypertension, diarrhea, decreased appetite, weight loss and fatigue, which is consistent with the known side-effect profile of lenvatinib.
Liver cancer is the second leading cause of cancer related deaths and is estimated to be responsible for approximately 750,000 deaths per year globally. Additionally, approximately 780,000 cases are newly diagnosed each year, about 80% of which occur in Asian regions. Specifically, in China, there are approximately 395,000 new cases and 380,000 deaths per year, accounting for approximately 50% of cases worldwide. HCC accounts for 85% to 90% of primary liver cancer cases. Treatment options for unresectable HCC are limited. Therefore, HCC is extremely difficult to treat, and the development of new treatments is necessary.
Eisai submitted applications for an additional indication for lenvatinib for the treatment of HCC in Japan (June 2017), the United States and Europe (July 2017).
Eisai positions oncology as a key therapeutic area, and is aiming to discover revolutionary new medicines with the potential to cure cancer. Eisai is committed to exploring the potential clinical benefits of lenvatinib as it seeks to contribute further to addressing the diverse needs of, and increasing the benefits provided to patients with cancer, their families, and healthcare providers.