Romiplostim: a review of its use in immune thrombocytopenia.
ABSTRACT Romiplostim (Nplate®) is an Fc-peptide fusion protein (peptibody) that acts as a thrombopoietin receptor agonist; it has no amino acid sequence homology with endogenous thrombopoietin. This article reviews the clinical efficacy and tolerability of subcutaneous romiplostim in adults with immune thrombocytopenia (ITP), as well as summarizing its pharmacological properties. The efficacy of 12 or 24 weeks' therapy with subcutaneous romiplostim was compared with that of placebo in patients with ITP in three randomized, double-blind, multicentre, phase III trials. In the two 24-week trials, the durable platelet response rate (primary endpoint) was significantly higher with romiplostim than with placebo in both splenectomized and nonsplenectomized patients. In addition, the majority of romiplostim recipients were able to discontinue or reduce their concurrent ITP therapy, and romiplostim improved health-related quality of life (HR-QOL). In the 12-week trial in splenectomized or nonsplenectomized Japanese patients with ITP, the median number of weeks with a platelet response (primary endpoint) was significantly higher with romiplostim than with placebo. Two extension studies (with median durations of romiplostim treatment of 78 and 100 weeks) demonstrated that long-term therapy with romiplostim maintained platelet counts in the target range in patients with ITP. In a randomized, open-label, multicentre, 52-week, phase IIIb trial, romiplostim was more effective than the medical standard of care in nonsplenectomized patients with ITP who had received at least one prior ITP treatment. Significantly fewer patients receiving romiplostim versus the medical standard of care experienced treatment failure or required splenectomy (co-primary endpoints), and clinically meaningful improvements from baseline in HR-QOL scores were seen with romiplostim. Subcutaneous romiplostim was generally well tolerated in patients with ITP; in short-term trials, the majority of adverse events were of mild to moderate severity and appeared to be related to the underlying thrombocytopenia. The incidence of bleeding events of at least grade 3 severity did not significantly differ between romiplostim and placebo recipients, and was significantly lower with romiplostim than with the medical standard of care. Romiplostim did not appear to be associated with an increased risk of haematological malignancies or an increased risk of thrombotic events. Although binding antibodies against romiplostim or thrombopoietin developed in some romiplostim recipients, with neutralizing antibodies to romiplostim detected in two romiplostim recipients, antibodies cross reacting to thrombopoietin have not been detected. Romiplostim was associated with modest increases in bone marrow reticulin in some patients with ITP; reductions in reticulin were usually seen when romiplostim was discontinued. In conclusion, subcutaneous romiplostim is a valuable agent for use in patients with refractory chronic ITP.
- SourceAvailable from: Howard Liebman[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Chronic immune thrombocytopenic purpura (ITP) is characterised by accelerated platelet destruction and decreased platelet production. Short-term administration of the thrombopoiesis-stimulating protein, romiplostim, has been shown to increase platelet counts in most patients with chronic ITP. We assessed the long-term administration of romiplostim in splenectomised and non-splenectomised patients with ITP. In two parallel trials, 63 splenectomised and 62 non-splenectomised patients with ITP and a mean of three platelet counts 30x10(9)/L or less were randomly assigned 2:1 to subcutaneous injections of romiplostim (n=42 in splenectomised study and n=41 in non-splenectomised study) or placebo (n=21 in both studies) every week for 24 weeks. Doses of study drug were adjusted to maintain platelet counts of 50x10(9)/L to 200x10(9)/L. The primary objectives were to assess the efficacy of romiplostim as measured by a durable platelet response (platelet count > or =50x10(9)/L during 6 or more of the last 8 weeks of treatment) and treatment safety. Analysis was per protocol. These studies are registered with ClinicalTrials.gov, numbers NCT00102323 and NCT00102336. A durable platelet response was achieved by 16 of 42 splenectomised patients given romplostim versus none of 21 given placebo (difference in proportion of patients responding 38% [95% CI 23.4-52.8], p=0.0013), and by 25 of 41 non-splenectomised patients given romplostim versus one of 21 given placebo (56% [38.7-73.7], p<0.0001). The overall platelet response rate (either durable or transient platelet response) was noted in 88% (36/41) of non-splenectomised and 79% (33/42) of splenectomised patients given romiplostim compared with 14% (three of 21) of non-splenectomised and no splenectomised patients given placebo (p<0.0001). Patients given romiplostim achieved platelet counts of 50x10(9)/L or more on a mean of 13.8 (SE 0.9) weeks (mean 12.3 [1.2] weeks in splenectomised group vs 15.2 [1.2] weeks in non-splenectomised group) compared with 0.8 (0.4) weeks for those given placebo (0.2 [0.1] weeks vs 1.3 [0.8] weeks). 87% (20/23) of patients given romiplostim (12/12 splenectomised and eight of 11 non-splenectomised patients) reduced or discontinued concurrent therapy compared with 38% (six of 16) of those given placebo (one of six splenectomised and five of ten non-splenectomised patients). Adverse events were much the same in patients given romiplostim and placebo. No antibodies against romiplostim or thrombopoietin were detected. Romiplostim was well tolerated, and increased and maintained platelet counts in splenectomised and non-splenectomised patients with ITP. Many patients were able to reduce or discontinue other ITP medications. Stimulation of platelet production by romiplostim may provide a new therapeutic option for patients with ITP.The Lancet 03/2008; 371(9610):395-403. · 39.06 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Health-related quality of life (HRQoL) is a major concern for adults with chronic immune thrombocytopenic purpura (ITP) due to the symptoms associated with the disease and its treatment. This study utilized the ITP-patient assessment questionnaire (ITP-PAQ), a specialized HRQoL questionnaire for ITP, to investigate the humanistic burden of ITP and the impact of romiplostim therapy on HRQoL in two, placebo-controlled, phase 3 clinical trials of splenectomized and non-splenectomized patients. ITP-PAQ was self-administered to ITP patients at baseline, and weeks 4, 12 and 24 of treatment. Splenectomized patients had lower baseline HRQoL scores than non-splenectomized patients in seven of 10 scales (P < 0.05). After 24 weeks of romiplostim therapy, splenectomized patients showed significant improvements over placebo in four of 10 ITP-PAQ Scales (Symptoms, P = 0.0337; Bother, P = 0.0126; Social Activity, P = 0.0145; and Women's Reproductive Health, P = 0.0184). Non-splenectomized patients demonstrated significant improvement over placebo in the Activity Scale (P = 0.0458). Data pooled from the two trials, adjusted for splenectomy status, showed significant improvement for romiplostim-treated patients in six scales; Symptoms, Bother, Activity, Fear, Social Activity and Women's Reproductive Health. These results suggest that adult patients with chronic ITP have improved HRQoL following romiplostim therapy.British Journal of Haematology 11/2008; 144(3):409-15. · 4.94 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Immune thrombocytopenia (ITP) is mediated by platelet autoantibodies that accelerate platelet destruction and inhibit their production. Most cases are considered idiopathic, whereas others are secondary to coexisting conditions. Insights from secondary forms suggest that the proclivity to develop platelet-reactive antibodies arises through diverse mechanisms. Variability in natural history and response to therapy suggests that primary ITP is also heterogeneous. Certain cases may be secondary to persistent, sometimes inapparent, infections, accompanied by coexisting antibodies that influence outcome. Alternatively, underlying immune deficiencies may emerge. In addition, environmental and genetic factors may impact platelet turnover, propensity to bleed, and response to ITP-directed therapy. We review the pathophysiology of several common secondary forms of ITP. We suggest that primary ITP is also best thought of as an autoimmune syndrome. Better understanding of pathogenesis and tolerance checkpoint defects leading to autoantibody formation may facilitate patient-specific approaches to diagnosis and management.Blood 05/2009; 113(26):6511-21. · 9.06 Impact Factor