August 28, 2014
Pfizer Inc. and Protalix BioTherapeutics, Inc. announced today that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved ELELYSO™ (taliglucerase alfa) for injection for pediatric patients. ELELYSO is therefore now indicated for long-term enzyme replacement therapy (ERT) for adult and pediatric patients with a confirmed diagnosis of Type 1 Gaucher disease.
“The approval of ELELYSO to treat pediatric patients with Type 1 Gaucher disease provides physicians another treatment option for this rare and potentially debilitating disease,” said Rory O’Connor, Senior Vice President, Global Medical Affairs, Global Innovative Pharma Business, Pfizer Inc. “This pediatric indication, along with the recent announcement that ELELYSO received kosher certification by the Orthodox Union (OU), reinforces the ongoing commitment of Pfizer to addressing the needs of the Gaucher community.”
The safety and efficacy of ELELYSO were assessed in fourteen pediatric patients with Type 1 Gaucher disease in two clinical trials. The first trial consisted of nine patients in a 12-month, multi-center, double-blind, randomized study in treatment-naïve patients aged two to 13 years. At the end of the 12-month study, therapeutic efficacy of ELELYSO was demonstrated, as measured by a decrease in spleen and liver volume and an increase in platelet count. A second trial consisted of 5 pediatric patients aged 6 to 16 years who were switched from imiglucerase to ELELYSO. The trial was a 9-month, multi-center, open-label, single-arm study in patients who had been receiving treatment with imiglucerase at dosages ranging from 9.5 units/kg to 60 units/kg every other week for a minimum of 2 years. ELELYSO was administered for 9 months at the same dose as each patient’s previous imiglucerase dose. If needed, adjustment of dosage was allowed during the study in order to maintain stability of clinical parameters. Mean spleen and liver volume, platelet count and hemoglobin value remained stable through 9 months of ELELYSO treatment.
The recommended dosage of ELELSYO for treatment-naïve adult and pediatric patients four years of age and older is 60 units per kg of body weight administered every other week as a 60 to 120 minute intravenous infusion.
Patients previously treated on a stable dosage of imiglucerase are recommended to begin treatment with ELELYSO at that same dosage when they switch from imiglucerase to ELELYSO. Dosage adjustments can be made based on achievement and maintenance of each patient’s therapeutic goals.
Serious hypersensitivity reactions, including anaphylaxis, have occurred in some patients treated with ELELYSO. The most common adverse reactions for ELELYSO in clinical trials were itching, flushing, headache, joint pain, pain in extremity, abdominal pain, vomiting, fatigue, back pain, dizziness, nausea and rash. Vomiting occurred more often in pediatric patients than adults.
“While Type 1 Gaucher disease can manifest in childhood or adulthood, the disease more often presents during childhood,” said Paige Kaplan, MB, BCh, Section of Biochemical Genetics (Metabolic Diseases), Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. “It is important that children with this disease have access to a range of FDA-approved treatment options that are effective.”
As part of its ongoing commitment to helping address the unmet medical needs of people with rare diseases, Pfizer also offers a specialized support program — called Gaucher Personal Support (GPS) — for people living with Gaucher disease. Pfizer GPS is a one-stop resource for personalized patient support and specialty pharmacy services for patients and healthcare professionals. Pfizer GPS employs a dedicated and caring team of healthcare specialists who are available to help patients with Gaucher disease and their caregivers with reimbursement assistance, coordinating and locating infusion services and ongoing pharmacy support. Using Pfizer GPS, patients and healthcare professionals can access all support services 24/7 using one toll-free phone number, 1-855-ELELYSO (1-855-353-5976).
ELELYSO for injection is supplied as 200 units per vial and is available by prescription only.
For more information about Gaucher disease, please visit www.ELELYSO.com.
ELELYSO™ is indicated for long-term enzyme replacement therapy (ERT) for adult and pediatric patients with a confirmed diagnosis of Type 1 Gaucher disease.
About Gaucher Disease
Gaucher disease is an inherited lysosomal storage disorder in humans that affects an estimated 10,000 people worldwide and can cause severe and debilitating symptoms, including: enlargement of the liver and spleen, various forms of bone disease, easy bruising, and anemia (a low number of red blood cells).
Gaucher disease consists of varying degrees of severity; it has been sub-divided into three subtypes – Types 1, 2, and 3 – according to the presence or absence of neurological involvement. Type 1, the most common, is found at a higher frequency among individuals who are of Ashkenazi Jewish ancestry.
Pfizer and Rare Diseases
Rare diseases are among the most serious of all illnesses and impact millions of patients worldwide, representing an opportunity to apply our knowledge and expertise to help make a significant impact in addressing unmet medical needs. The Pfizer focus on rare diseases builds on more than a decade of experience and a global portfolio of 22 medicines approved worldwide that treat rare diseases in the areas of hematology, neuroscience, inherited metabolic disorders, pulmonology, and oncology.
Pfizer Inc.: Working together for a healthier world®
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Protalix BioTherapeutics Inc.
Protalix is a biopharmaceutical company focused on the development and commercialization of recombinant therapeutic proteins expressed through its proprietary plant cell-based expression system, ProCellEx®. Protalix’s unique expression system presents a proprietary method for developing recombinant proteins in a cost-effective, industrial-scale manner. Protalix’s first product manufactured by ProCellEx, taliglucerase alfa, was approved for marketing by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in May 2012, by Israel’s Ministry of Health in September 2012, by the Brazilian National Health Surveillance Agency (ANVISA) in March 2013, by the Mexican Federal Commission for the Protection against Sanitary Risk (COFEPRIS) in April 2013, by the Australian Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) in May 2014 and by the regulatory authorities of other countries. Marketing applications for taliglucerase alfa have been filed in additional territories as well. Protalix has partnered with Pfizer Inc. for the worldwide development and commercialization of taliglucerase alfa, excluding Israel and Brazil, where Protalix retains full rights. Protalix’s development pipeline includes the following product candidates: PRX-102, a modified version of the recombinant human alpha-GAL-A protein for the treatment of Fabry disease; PRX-112, an orally-delivered glucocerebrosidase enzyme that is produced and encapsulated within carrot cells, for the treatment of Gaucher disease; pr-antiTNF, a similar plant cell version of etanercept (Enbrel®) for the treatment of certain immune and inflammatory diseases, such as rheumatoid arthritis, Crohn’s disease, colitis, psoriasis and other autoimmune and inflammatory disorders; PRX-110 for the treatment of Cystic Fibrosis; and others.