Pharma Focus Asia
Eppendorf Bioprocess Solutions

BeiGene Announces Acceptance of a Supplemental Biologics License Application in China for Tislelizumab in Nasopharyngeal Cancer

Monday, August 23, 2021

BeiGene, Ltd., a global biotechnology company focused on developing and commercializing innovative medicines worldwide, today announced that the Center for Drug Evaluation (CDE) of the China National Medical Products Administration (NMPA) has accepted a supplemental Biologics License Application (sBLA) for anti-PD-1 antibody tislelizumab in combination with chemotherapy as a first-line treatment for patients with recurrent or metastatic nasopharyngeal cancer (NPC).

“Treatment options for NPC, one of the most common head and neck cancers in China and many parts of Asia, are limited, with chemotherapy continuing to dominate front-line care. Supported by the positive RATIONALE 309 trial, the NMPA acceptance of this sBLA, which is the ninth for tislelizumab in China, represents an incredible milestone in its development history and serves as a validation of this potentially differentiated checkpoint inhibitor,” commented Yong (Ben) Ben, M.D., Chief Medical Officer, Immuno-Oncology at BeiGene. “We look forward to bringing this important immunotherapy to the underserved NPC patient community in China.”

The sBLA is supported by clinical results from a randomized, double-blind, Phase 3 clinical trial RATIONALE 309 (NCT03924986) to evaluate the efficacy and safety of tislelizumab combined with gemcitabine and cisplatin versus placebo combined with gemcitabine and cisplatin as a first-line treatment for patients with recurrent or metastatic NPC. The primary endpoint of this trial is progression-free survival (PFS) as assessed by independent review committee (IRC) in the intention-to-treat (ITT) population; secondary endpoints include overall survival (OS), IRC-assessed overall response rate (ORR) and duration of response (DoR), and investigator-assessed PFS. A total of 263 Asian patients were enrolled and randomized 1:1 to either the tislelizumab plus chemotherapy arm or the placebo plus chemotherapy arm.

As announced in May 2021, RATIONALE 309 met the primary endpoint of PFS at the planned interim analysis. The safety profile of tislelizumab was consistent with its known risks, with no new safety signals identified with the addition of chemotherapy. BeiGene expects to present results from the RATIONALE 309 trial at an upcoming medical conference.

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