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NICE recommends Celgene's Revlimid combo for follicular lymphoma

Published on 27/02/20 at 11:50am

NICE has chosen to recommend Celgene’s Revlimid (lenalidomide) for use on the NHS, it has emerged, alongside Genentech’s Rituxan (rituximab), as an intervention for previously treated follicular lymphoma (FL) of grade 1 to 3A.

According to Celgene, this now means that 600 patients in England who were “previously limited to clinical trials or palliative care” will now be able to access the drug immediately “with interim funding provided via the Cancer Drugs Fund”.

“Today’s news will be welcomed by both the clinical and patient communities,” commented Dr Kim Linton, Consultant Medical Oncologist at The Christie NHS Foundation Trust. “There are currently limited treatment options for patients who relapse or don’t respond to therapy. This option provides a novel chemotherapy-free alternative and adds an extra line to the treatment pathway with the potential to prolong survival for our patients.”

FL, the most common variety of non-Hodgkin lymphoma, is known as an incurable cancer, presenting shorter remission periods and recurring relapses, despite initial treatment often being successful; around 20% of the new annual cases of FL in the UK are expected to relapse within the first 24 months following initial treatment, and this seen as a marker of poor survival in patients.

“We are delighted that our ongoing collaboration with NICE has resulted in a positive recommendation for R2 in follicular lymphoma” said Lynelle Hoch, General Manager at Celgene UK & Ireland. “Today’s decision is testament to the ongoing passion and commitment of the company to expand treatment options that address the underserved needs of the blood cancer community.”  

Matt Fellows

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