Brentuximab vedotin

Brentuximab vedotin is to be available on the NHS for first-line treatment of anaplastic large cell lymphoma.

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The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has today announced that brentuximab vedotin (Adcetris®) will be available on the NHS in England for adults with systemic anaplastic large cell lymphoma (ALCL) who have not been treated before.

Brentuximab vedotin is an antibody–drug conjugate: an anti-cancer drug joined to an antibody. To treat ALCL, it is given in combination with chemotherapy with cyclophosphamide, doxorubicin (or hydroxydaunorubicin) and prednisolone (CHP). It was licensed as a first-line treatment for ALCL earlier this year, based on a clinical trial that showed it had significant benefits over standard CHOP chemotherapy.

Today’s NICE decision is excellent news for people with ALCL, which can be difficult to treat and has, until now, had limited treatment options.

Lymphoma Action was involved in the NICE appraisal process, representing the views of people affected by ALCL and providing an insight into the potential impact of brentuximab vedotin for people with this rare and aggressive type of lymphoma.

Being diagnosed with a rare type of lymphoma, like systemic anaplastic large cell lymphoma, can have a significant impact on the quality of life of patients and their family or friends. Not only can the disease and the current treatment options have a physical impact, but the psychological impact of being diagnosed with a rare cancer, with potentially poor outcomes, can be devastating. That is why we are really pleased that newly diagnosed patients can now have access to an effective treatment, that can improve their quality of life and outcomes.
Stephen Scowcroft, Director of Operations and External Affairs, Lymphoma Action

Wales and Northern Ireland usually follow NICE recommendations for treatment options. Scotland has a separate process for deciding which medicines are available on the NHS. We will report on the outcome of any Scottish medicines appraisal when it is available.

9 July 2020