AstraZeneca and MedImmune, its global biologics research and development arm, has announced that the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved Imfinzi for the treatment of patients with unresectable Stage III non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) whose disease has not progressed following concurrent platinum-based chemotherapy and radiation therapy (CRT).
Stage III (locally advanced) NSCLC is commonly divided into three sub-categories (IIIA, IIIB and IIIC), defined by how much the cancer has spread locally and the possibility of surgery. This differentiates it from Stage IV disease, when the cancer has spread (metastasised) to distant organs.
The approval of Imfinzi is based on the positive PFS data from the Phase III PACIFIC trial in which Imfinzi demonstrated an improvement in median PFS of 11.2 months compared to placebo, representing a 48% reduction in relative risk of progression or death vs. placebo in all patients, regardless of PD-L1 status. The PACIFIC trial is ongoing to evaluate overall survival (OS) in unresectable Stage III NSCLC. Detailed interim results of the PACIFIC trial were published online in the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM).
Dave Fredrickson, Executive Vice President, Head of the Oncology Business Unit at AstraZeneca, said: “The approval of Imfinzi in this earlier stage of non-small cell lung cancer is a truly meaningful milestone for patients who, until now, had no FDA-approved treatment options following chemoradiation therapy. Globally, approximately 30% of patients with NSCLC present with Stage III disease and we are excited to launch the first immunotherapy into this setting.”