Eisai completes rolling submission to the U.S. FDA for biologics license application of lecanemab for early Alzheimer’s disease under the accelerated approval pathway

TOKYO, Japan and CAMBRIDGE, MA, USA I May 09, 2022 I Eisai Co., Ltd. (Headquarters: Tokyo, CEO: Haruo Naito, "Eisai") and Biogen Inc. (Nasdaq: BIIB, Corporate headquarters: Cambridge, Massachusetts, CEO: Michel Vounatsos, "Biogen") announced today that Eisai has completed the rolling submission to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) of a Biologics License Application (BLA) under the accelerated approval pathway for the investigational anti-amyloid beta (Aβ) protofibril antibody lecanemab (BAN2401) for the treatment of mild cognitive impairment (MCI) due to Alzheimer’s disease (AD) and mild AD (collectively known as early AD) with confirmed presence of amyloid pathology in the brain. As part of the completed rolling submission, Eisai has requested Priority Review. If the FDA accepts the BLA, the Prescription Drug User Fee Act (PDUFA) action date (target date for completion of examination) will be set. While Eisai is currently submitting lecanemab under the accelerated approval pathway, the lecanemab Phase 3 confirmatory Clarity AD clinical trial conducted with 1,795 patients will report out in the Fall of 2022. The FDA has agreed that the results of Clarity AD, when completed, can serve as the confirmatory study to verify the clinical benefit of lecanemab. Dependent upon the results of the Clarity AD clinical trial, Eisai may submit for full approval of lecanemab to the FDA during fiscal year 2022.

The BLA submission for lecanemab is based on clinical, biomarker and safety data from the proof-of-concept Phase 2b (Study 201 Core) in 856 people with early AD with confirmed presence of amyloid pathology, biomarker and safety data from the Study 201 OLE (open-label extension study, 180 subjects), and blinded safety data from the confirmatory Clarity AD Phase 3 study (1,795 subjects). The large number of participants across these studies provides the FDA with extensive safety data. Study 201 explored the impact of treatment with lecanemab on reducing amyloid plaque and clinical decline. At 18 months of treatment, 10 mg/kg biweekly lecanemab reduced brain amyloid by a mean of 0.306 SUVr units (from a baseline mean of 1.37), and over 80% of subjects became amyloid negative by visual read. Furthermore, the extent of reduction in amyloid was correlated with slower clinical decline on ADCOMS (Alzheimer’s Disease Composite Score), CDR-SB (Clinical Dementia Rating-Sum-of-Boxes), and ADAS-cog (Alzheimer Disease Assessment Scale-Cognitive Subscale) at the treatment group and patient level. In the Core study, the overall rate of amyloid-related imaging abnormalities-edema/effusion (ARIA-E), an adverse event associated with anti-amyloid beta antibodies therapies was 9.9% (16/161) of patients treated with lecanemab 10 mg/kg biweekly compared with 0.8% (2/245) of placebo patients. The results from Study 201 were published in a peer-reviewed journal Alzheimer’s Research and Therapy in April 2021.

“We would like to thank the people living with early AD and the healthcare professionals who participated in the lecanemab 201 study for their cooperation allowing completion of this BLA to the U.S. FDA. Alzheimer’s disease is a progressive and devastating disease with few treatment options,” said Haruo Naito, Chief Executive Officer at Eisai Co., Ltd. “Eisai employees have spent time with people living with Alzheimer’s disease and their families to truly understand their feelings and challenges and have been working to create new treatments for many years. Our comprehensive medicine creation approach along the Alzheimer’s disease continuum reflects Eisai’s long-term commitment to providing innovative treatments to the people living with AD, their families and healthcare professionals who urgently need new treatment options.”

“With Alzheimer’s disease, patients and their loved ones don’t have the luxury of time. There is an enormous unmet need in this space, and we continue to make progress in advancing additional treatment options for people living with this devastating disease,” said Michel Vounatsos, Chief Executive Officer at Biogen. “Anti-amyloid antibodies are a new wave of important medicines, which could provide patients and their physicians more options in addressing this complex disease.”
Lecanemab was granted Breakthrough Therapy and Fast Track designations by the FDA in June and December 2021, respectively. In March 2022, Eisai initiated submission of application data to the Pharmaceuticals and Medical Devices Agency (PMDA) under the prior assessment consultation system in Japan with the aim of obtaining early approval for lecanemab, and aims to file for the manufacturing and marketing approval based on the results of Clarity AD during Eisai’s fiscal year 2022.

Eisai serves as the lead of lecanemab development and regulatory submissions globally with both Eisai and Biogen co-commercializing and co-promoting the product and Eisai having final decision-making authority.

SOURCE: Biogen

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