Friday, Jun 4, 2021

Genentech Presents Latest Advances With Immunotherapies in Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma

Data for investigational CD20xCD3 bispecific antibodies and new combination regimens with Polivy showed enhanced clinical benefits for people with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma in early studies

South San Francisco, CA -- June 4, 2021 --

Genentech, a member of the Roche Group (SIX: RO, ROG; OTCQX: RHHBY), today announced that new data on its investigational CD20xCD3 T-cell engaging bispecific antibodies, mosunetuzumab and glofitamab, and its first-in-class anti-CD79b antibody-drug conjugate, Polivy® (polatuzumab vedotin), in non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (NHL) will be presented at the 2021 ASCO Annual Meeting from June 4-8, 2021.

“People with difficult-to-treat blood cancers such as non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma still need more options to help improve outcomes,” said Levi Garraway, M.D., Ph.D., chief medical officer and head of Global Product Development. “We are encouraged by promising data from our emerging T-cell engaging bispecific antibodies, mosunetuzumab and glofitamab, and the antibody-drug conjugate, Polivy, that demonstrate the potential of these novel immunotherapeutic approaches for various groups of patients.”

While approximately 500,000 people worldwide are diagnosed with NHL each year, treatment options are currently limited and resistance to existing therapies or relapse following treatment is common. The most prevalent form of NHL, accounting for about 40% of newly diagnosed NHL cases, is an aggressive form called diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL), that comes with a life expectancy of weeks or months if left untreated.

In clinical trials to date, the investigational CD20xCD3 T-cell engaging bispecific antibodies, mosunetuzumab and glofitamab, have shown promising responses across multiple types of NHL, including relapsed or refractory (R/R) DLBCL and follicular lymphoma (FL). Pivotal data for these medicines are expected this year and Genentech is targeting a regulatory filing for mosunetuzumab in FL by the end of 2021, following its U.S. Food and Drug Administration Breakthrough Therapy designation granted in June 2020. Key data on mosunetuzumab and glofitamab to be presented at the meeting include:

  • Phase I NP30179 study investigating step-up dosing of glofitamab in heavily pre-treated R/R NHL showed high, ongoing complete responses (CRs) and an acceptable safety profile. After a median follow-up of 6.3 months, results showed that glofitamab achieved a complete metabolic response rate, defined as the disappearance of metabolic tumor activity, of 71.4% in patients with aggressive (fast-growing) NHL. The most common adverse events (AEs) were cytokine release syndrome (CRS) (63.5%), neutropenia (38.5%), and pyrexia (32.7%); CRS events were mostly low grade and confined to the first cycle of treatment. Abstract #7519, poster discussion.
  • Phase I/II GO40516 study of mosunetuzumab in combination with Polivy in R/R NHL showed promising efficacy and an acceptable safety profile. The regimen achieved a CR of 54.5% in all patients. Eighty six percent of patients evaluated had aggressive NHL, and these patients achieved a CR rate of 47.4%. The most frequent treatment-related AEs were neutropenia (45.4%), fatigue, nausea, and diarrhea (all 36.4%) and CRS (9.1%; all Grade 1). Abstract #7520, poster discussion.

Broad development programs are ongoing for mosunetuzumab and glofitamab, including the Phase III GO42909 trial investigating mosunetuzumab plus lenalidomide versus Rituxan® (rituximab) plus lenalidomide in R/R FL, which will soon be enrolling patients. For glofitamab, the Phase III GO41944 open-label, randomized trial designed to evaluate the safety and efficacy of glofitamab plus gemcitabine and oxaliplatin (glofit-GemOx) versus Rituxan plus GemOx in patients with R/R DLBCL, is also ongoing.

Genentech is committed to pursuing treatment solutions that can be tailored to meet the various needs of both people living with NHL and healthcare professionals. Polivy is already a treatment option for people with R/R DLBCL and continues to show potential in multiple combinations. Key data at the meeting include:

  • New triplet combination of Polivy with Rituxan and lenalidomide, which demonstrated promising activity in difficult-to-treat R/R DLBCL, based on results from the Phase Ib/II GO29834 study. With a median follow-up of 9.7 months, median overall survival was 10.9 months (95% CI: 7.4–NE) and median progression-free survival was 6.3 months (95% CI: 4.5–9.7) in patients treated with the triplet. The most commonly reported Grade 3-4 AEs were neutropenia (58.0%), thrombocytopenia (14.0%), infections (14.0%) and anemia (11.0%). Abstract #7512, poster discussion.

As a leader in hematology development, Genentech will continue to follow the science to expand and improve upon treatment options for healthcare providers and people with difficult-to-treat blood cancers.

Keep up to date with ASCO news and updates by using the hashtag #ASCO21 and follow Genentech on Twitter via@Genentech and on LinkedIn.

About Genentech’s investigational bispecifics in hematology
Genentech is currently developing two T-cell engaging bispecific antibodies, mosunetuzumab and glofitamab, designed to target CD20 on the surface of B-cells and CD3 on the surface of T-cells. This dual targeting activates and redirects a patient’s existing T-cells to engage and eliminate target B-cells by releasing cytotoxic proteins into the B-cells. Mosunetuzumab and glofitamab differ in their structures, and both are being developed by Genentech as part of our ongoing strategy to explore multiple bispecific formats, to identify those that maximize potential clinical benefits for patients. Mosunetuzumab has a structure similar to that of a natural human antibody in that it has two ‘Fab’ regions, but is different from naturally-occurring antibodies in that one ‘Fab’ region targets CD20 and the other ‘Fab’ region targets CD3. Glofitamab is based on a novel structural format which we call ‘2:1’, which refers to the structure of the antibody. It is engineered to have two ‘Fab’ regions which bind to CD20, and one ‘Fab’ region which binds to CD3. The clinical development programs for mosunetuzumab and glofitamab include ongoing investigations of these molecules as monotherapies and in combination with other medicines, for the treatment of people with CD20-positive B-cell (non-Hodgkin’s lymphomas), including diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL) and follicular lymphoma (FL).

About Polivy® (polatuzumab vedotin-piiq)
Polivy is a first-in-class anti-CD79b antibody-drug conjugate (ADC). The CD79b protein is expressed specifically in the majority of B-cells, an immune cell impacted in some types of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (NHL), making it a promising target for the development of new therapies. Polivy binds to CD79b and destroys these B-cells through the delivery of an anti-cancer agent, which is thought to minimize the effects on normal cells. Polivy is being developed by Roche using Seagen ADC technology and is currently being investigated for the treatment of several types of NHL.

About the NP30179 study
The NP30179 study [NCT03075696] is a Phase I/Ib, multicenter, open-label, dose-escalation study, evaluating the efficacy, safety, tolerability and pharmacokinetics of glofitamab. In this study, glofitamab is assessed as a single-agent and in combination with Gazyva® (obinutuzumab), following pre-treatment with a one-time, fixed-dose of Gazyva, in people with relapsed or refractory (R/R) B-cell NHL. Outcome measures include overall response rate, complete response rate per Lugano 2014 criteria, maximum tolerated dose and tolerability.

About the GO40516 study
The GO40516 study [NCT03671018] is a Phase I/II, multicenter, open-label study, evaluating the efficacy, safety, tolerability and pharmacokinetics of mosunetuzumab in combination with Polivy in people with B-cell NHL. It consists of a dose finding portion followed by an expansion phase for second line or later (2L+) participants with R/R DLBCL and 2L+ R/R FL. Outcome measures include best overall response rate, maximum tolerated dose and tolerability.

About the GO29834 study
The GO29834 study [ NCT02600897] is a Phase Ib/II, multicenter, open-label study, evaluating the efficacy and safety of Polivy with Rituxan® (rituximab) and lenalidomide in R/R DLBCL. Outcome measures include complete response and tolerability.

Polivy U.S. Indication
Polivy is a prescription medicine used with other medicines, bendamustine and a rituximab product, to treat diffuse large B-cell lymphoma in adults who have progressed after at least two prior therapies.

The accelerated approval of Polivy is based on a type of response rate. There are ongoing studies to confirm the clinical benefit of Polivy.

Important Safety Information
Possible serious side effects

Everyone reacts differently to Polivy therapy, so it’s important to know what the side effects are. Some people who have been treated with Polivy have experienced serious to fatal side effects. A patient’s doctor may stop or adjust a patient’s treatment if any serious side effects occur. Patients must contact their healthcare team if there are any signs of these side effects.

  • Nerve problems in arms and legs: This may happen as early as after the first dose and may worsen with every dose. If a patient already has nerve pain, Polivy may make it worse. The patient’s doctor will monitor for signs and symptoms, such as changes in sense of touch, numbness or tingling in hands or feet, nerve pain, burning sensation, any muscle weakness, or changes to walking patterns
  • Infusion-related reactions: A patient may experience fever, chills, rash, breathing problems, low blood pressure, or hives within 24 hours of the infusion
  • Infections: Patients should contact their healthcare team, if they experience a fever of 100.4°F or higher, chills, cough, or pain during urination. Also, a patient’s doctor may give medication before giving Polivy, which may prevent some infections, and monitor blood counts throughout treatment with Polivy. Treatment with Polivy can cause severe low blood cell counts
  • Rare and serious brain infections: A patient’s doctor will monitor the patient closely for signs and symptoms of these types of infections. Patients should contact their doctor if they experience confusion, dizziness or loss of balance, trouble talking or walking, or vision changes
  • Tumor lysis syndrome: Caused by the fast breakdown of cancer cells. Signs include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and lack of energy
  • Potential harm to liver: Some signs include tiredness, weight loss, pain in the abdomen, dark urine, and yellowing of the skin or the white part of the eyes. Patients may be at higher risk if they already have liver problems or are taking other medication

Side effects seen most often
The most common side effects during treatment were:

  • Low blood cell counts (platelets, red blood cells, white blood cells)
  • Nerve problems in arms and legs
  • Tiredness or lack of energy
  • Diarrhea
  • Nausea
  • Fever
  • Decreased appetite
  • Infections

Polivy may not be for everyone. A patient should talk to their doctor if they are:

  • Pregnant or may be pregnant: Data have shown that Polivy may harm an unborn baby
  • Planning to become pregnant: Women should avoid getting pregnant while taking Polivy. Women should use effective contraception during treatment and for at least 3 months after their last Polivy treatment. Men taking Polivy should use effective contraception during treatment and for at least 5 months after their last Polivy treatment
  • Breastfeeding: Women should not breastfeed while taking Polivy and for at least 2 months after the last dose

These may not be all the side effects. Patients should talk to their healthcare provider for more information about the benefits and risks of Polivy treatment.

Report side effects to the FDA at (800) FDA-1088 or Report side effects to Genentech at (888) 835-2555.

Please visit for the full Prescribing Information for additional Important Safety Information.

About Genentech
Founded more than 40 years ago, Genentech is a leading biotechnology company that discovers, develops, manufactures and commercializes medicines to treat patients with serious and life-threatening medical conditions. The company, a member of the Roche Group, has headquarters in South San Francisco, California. For additional information about the company, please visit