Injectable Tecentriq Is Efficacious, Reduces Treatment Time for Lung Cancer

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Subcutaneous (injectable) Tecentriq had similar movement throughout the body, while saving on treatment time compared to intravenous administration of the drug in a group of patients with non-small cell lung cancer.

Subcutaneous (given via injection under the skin) administration of Tecentriq (atezolizumab) led to similar levels of the drug within the blood and a similar side effect profile as intravenous (IV) Tecentriq in certain patients with non-small cell lung cancer.

These findings come from the phase 1b/3 IMscin001 trial, which compared subcutaneous Tecentriq to IV Tecentriq in patients with locally advanced or metastatic non-small cell lung cancer that failed on platinum-based chemotherapy and has not been treated with an immunotherapy agent.

The study involved 371 patients who were randomly assigned to receive either subcutaneous or IV Tecentriq. The main goal of the study was minimum levels of Tecentriq in the blood, with secondary goals being safety, the ability to produce an immune response (known as the drug’s immunogenicity), patient-reported outcomes and efficacy.

While subcutaneous Tecentriq moves throughout the body similarly to the IV formulation with comparable side effects, the injection form of the drug also drastically reduces treatment time from three to eight minutes for the injection, compared to 30 to 60 minutes for an IV infusion, according to Roche, the manufacturer of Tecentriq.

Prior research in the breast cancer space found that patients tend to prefer the subcutaneous method of drug administration over receiving it intravenously. The PrefHER study showed that 86% of patients preferred to receive an injection version of Herceptin (trastuzumab) rather than IV Herceptin, with the biggest reason for the preference being saving time.

“By reducing the administration time, this new Tecentriq formulation could help save time for patients and healthcare systems,” said Dr. Levi Garraway, Roche’s chief medical officer and head of Global Product Development, in a press release.

Roche said it plans on sharing more detailed findings from IMscin001 at an upcoming medical meeting and submit these data for approval from the Food and Drug Administration.

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