LONDON – Vertex Pharmaceuticals Incorporated (Nasdaq: VRTX) today announced that the European Commission has granted approval of the label extension for KAFTRIO® (ivacaftor/tezacaftor/elexacaftor) in a combination regimen with ivacaftor for the treatment of cystic fibrosis (CF) in all patients ages 12 years and older who have at least one F508del mutation in the cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR) gene. With this extension of the indication, CF patients 12 years and older who are heterozygous for the F508del-CFTR mutation and a residual function (F/RF) or gating mutation (F/G) are eligible for the triple combination therapy for the first time, and the majority of people ages 12 years and older with CF in Europe are now eligible for KAFTRIO.
“This indication extension is important as CF patients in Europe with gating and residual function mutations will have access to KAFTRIO for the first time,” said Reshma Kewalramani, M.D., Chief Executive Officer and President at Vertex. “We look forward to working with health authorities and governments to ensure that all eligible patients who can benefit from this medicine have access as soon as possible.”
In both the United States and Australia, where the triple combination therapy is known as TRIKAFTA® (elexacaftor/tezacaftor/ivacaftor and ivacaftor), it is already licensed for the treatment of people with CF ages 12 years and older who have at least one copy of the F508del mutation in the CFTR gene, regardless of the other mutation type.
“In clinical trials ivacaftor/tezacaftor/elexacaftor plus ivacaftor showed positive significant results in people with cystic fibrosis ages 12 years and older who have at least one copy of the most common gene mutation (F508del) with the latest results showing clinical benefits in individuals who have an additional ‘gating’ (F/G) or ‘residual function’ (F/RF) gene mutation. It is welcome news for the CF community that the European regulatory authority has extended the licensed indications for this therapy based on the latest trial results which means that additional patients will gain access to this medication,” said Dr Peter Barry, Honorary Senior Lecturer at The University of Manchester.
As a result of long-term reimbursement agreements in the Republic of Ireland, Northern Ireland, Denmark and Luxembourg, and provisions for access in health care systems such as Germany, eligible patients in these countries will have access to the expanded indication for the triple combination regimen shortly following regulatory approval by the European Commission.
About Cystic Fibrosis
Cystic Fibrosis (CF) is a rare, life-shortening genetic disease affecting more than 80,000 people globally. CF is a progressive, multi-system disease that affects the lungs, liver, gastrointestinal (GI) tract, sinuses, sweat glands, pancreas and reproductive tract. CF is caused by a defective and/or missing CFTR protein resulting from certain mutations in the CFTR gene. Children must inherit two defective CFTR genes — one from each parent — to have CF. While there are many different types of CFTR mutations that can cause the disease, the vast majority of all people with CF have at least one F508del mutation. These mutations, which can be determined by a genetic test, or genotyping test, lead to CF by creating non-working and/or too few CFTR proteins at the cell surface. The defective function and/or absence of CFTR protein results in poor flow of salt and water into and out of the cells in a number of organs. In the lungs, this leads to the buildup of abnormally thick, sticky mucus that can cause chronic lung infections and progressive lung damage in many patients that eventually leads to death. The median age of death is in the early 30s.
About KAFTRIO® (ivacaftor/tezacaftor/elexacaftor) in a Combination With Ivacaftor
KAFTRIO® (ivacaftor/tezacaftor/elexacaftor) in a combination regimen with ivacaftor 150 mg was developed for the treatment of cystic fibrosis (CF) in patients ages 12 years and older who have at least one copy of the F508del mutation in the cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR) gene. Ivacaftor/tezacaftor/elexacaftor is designed to increase the quantity and function of the F508del-CFTR protein at the cell surface. The latest approved EU licensed indication for ivacaftor/tezacaftor/elexacaftor was supported by positive results of three global Phase 3 studies in people ages 12 years and older with CF: a 24-week Phase 3 study (Study 445-102) in 403 people with one F508del mutation and one minimal function mutation (F/MF), a four-week Phase 3 study (Study 445-103) in 107 people with two F508del mutations (F/F), and a Phase 3 study (Study 445-104) in 258 people heterozygous for the F508del-CFTR mutation and a CFTR gating mutation (F/G) or a residual function mutation (F/RF).
For complete product information, please see the Summary of Product Characteristics that can be found on www.ema.europa.eu.
Vertex is a global biotechnology company that invests in scientific innovation to create transformative medicines for people with serious diseases. The company has multiple approved medicines that treat the underlying cause of cystic fibrosis (CF) — a rare, life-threatening genetic disease — and has several ongoing clinical and research programs in CF. Beyond CF, Vertex has a robust pipeline of investigational small molecule medicines in other serious diseases where it has deep insight into causal human biology, including pain, alpha-1 antitrypsin deficiency and APOL1-mediated kidney diseases. In addition, Vertex has a rapidly expanding pipeline of cell and genetic therapies for diseases such as sickle cell disease, beta thalassemia, Duchenne muscular dystrophy and type 1 diabetes mellitus.
Founded in 1989 in Cambridge, Mass., Vertex’s global headquarters is now located in Boston’s Innovation District and its international headquarters is in London. Additionally, the company has research and development sites and commercial offices in North America, Europe, Australia and Latin America. Vertex is consistently recognized as one of the industry’s top places to work, including 11 consecutive years on Science magazine’s Top Employers list and a best place to work for LGBTQ equality by the Human Rights Campaign.
 Vertex. Data on File. Global CF EPI. 2021.
 EMA. Kaftrio Summary of product characteristics. Vertex Pharmaceuticals (Ireland) Limited. Available at: https://www.ema.europa.eu/en/documents/product-information/kaftrio-epar-product-information_en.pdf
Last accessed April 2021.
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