NICE recommends Vyxeos® for acute myeloid leukaemia

People at a table depicting NICE recommending Vyxeos

Jazz Pharmaceuticals plc today announced that the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence has published a Final Appraisal Determination recommending Vyxeos® 44 mg/100 mg powder for concentrate for solution for infusion for routine use on the NHS in England and Wales for the treatment of adults with newly diagnosed, therapy-related acute myeloid leukaemia (t-AML) or AML with myelodysplasia-related changes (AML-MRC) – two types of secondary AML.

Patients diagnosed with t-AML or AML-MRC have a very poor prognosis and have the poorest survival of all AML diagnostic subgroups. Thus they are classified as having high risk disease because of these poor outcomes. In the UK, the expected number of these high-risk AML cases is 680 per year. Its incidence increases with age and accounts for approximately 25% of all AML cases in the UK.

“This is the first new chemotherapy in forty years for adults with specific types of newly diagnosed secondary AML, a particularly aggressive cancer that typically affects older people and has a high mortality rate,” said Dr. Nigel Russell, Professor of Haematology, Faculty of Medicine & Health Sciences at the University of Nottingham. “I am pleased that NICE has recognised the value of this medicine for adults with secondary AML. In time, it is expected to become the standard of care for this specific group of older AML patients.”

“A diagnosis of acute myeloid leukaemia can have a huge emotional impact on the lives of patients, as well as their family and friends,” said Zack Pemberton-Whiteley, Patient Advocacy Director at Leukaemia Care. “We welcome the decision to recommend this treatment for adults with high-risk AML. Leukaemia Care has been working with NICE to enable patients to access this important new medicine, where options have been previously limited.”

“Jazz is delighted that Vyxeos will now be made routinely available on the NHS in England and Wales as people with therapy-related AML or AML with myelodysplasia-related changes have had limited treatment options until now,” said Iain McGill, Senior Vice President, Europe and Rest of World at Jazz Pharmaceuticals. “We believe that it is a meaningful medicine for patients with this rapidly progressing and life-threatening blood cancer.”

Vyxeos is an advanced liposomal formulation that delivers a synergistic molar ratio of daunorubicin and cytarabine. It is the first chemotherapy to demonstrate a significant overall survival advantage versus the current treatment standard, 7+3 chemotherapy, in a Phase 3 study of older adult patients with newly diagnosed t-AML or AML-MRC, and the first chemotherapy treatment option specifically for people who have these types of high-risk AML.