February 25, 2013 — The U.S. Food and Drug Administration today expanded the approved use of Stivarga (regorafenib) to treat patients with advanced gastrointestinal stromal tumors (GIST) that cannot be surgically removed and no longer respond to other FDA-approved treatments for this disease.
GIST is a tumor in which cancerous cells form in the tissues of the gastrointestinal tract, part of the body’s digestive system. According to the National Cancer Institute, an estimated 3,300 to 6,000 new cases of GIST occur yearly in the United States, most often in older adults.
Stivarga, a multi-kinase inhibitor, blocks several enzymes that promote cancer growth. With this new approval, Stivarga is intended to be used in patients whose GIST cancer cannot be removed by surgery or has spread to other parts of the body (metastatic) and is no longer responding to Gleevec (imatinib) and Sutent (sunitinib), two other FDA-approved drugs to treat GIST.
“Stivarga is the third drug approved by the FDA to treat gastrointestinal stromal tumors,” said Richard Pazdur, M.D., director of the Office of Hematology and Oncology Products in the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research. “It provides an important new treatment option for patients with GIST in which other approved drugs are no longer effective.”
Stivarga was approved in September 2012 to treat colorectal cancer. It is marketed by Bayer HealthCare Pharmaceuticals, based in Wayne, N.J. Gleevec is marketed by East Hanover, N.J.-based Novartis, and Sutent is marketed by New York City-based Pfizer.
Regorafenib (BAY 73-4506, commercial name Stivarga) is an oral multi-kinase inhibitor developed by Bayer which targets angiogenic, stromal and oncogenic receptor tyrosine kinase (RTK). Regorafenib shows anti-angiogenic activity due to its dual targetedVEGFR2-TIE2 tyrosine kinase inhibition. It is currently being studied as a potential treatment option in multiple tumor types.
Metastatic colorectal cancer
Regorafenib demonstrated to increase the overall survival of patients with metastaticcolorectal cancer and has been approved by the US FDA on September 27, 2012.Stivarga is being approved with a Boxed Warning alerting patients and health care professionals that severe and fatal liver toxicity occurred in patients treated with Stivarga during clinical studies. The most common side effects reported in patients treated with Stivarga include weakness or fatigue, loss of appetite, hand-foot syndrome (also called palmar-plantar erythrodysesthesia), diarrhea, mouth sores (mucositis), weight loss, infection, high blood pressure, and changes in voice volume or quality (dysphonia).
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- “Phase III Trial of Regorafenib in Metastatic Colorectal Cancer Meets Primary Endpoint of Improving Overall Survival”. Retrieved 2011-10-26.
- “FDA approves new treatment for advanced colorectal cancer”. 27 Sep 2012.
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