Ligand Partner CASI Pharmaceuticals Launches EVOMELA® in China

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SAN DIEGO–(BUSINESS WIRE)– Ligand Pharmaceuticals Incorporated (NASDAQ: LGND) partner CASI Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (Nasdaq: CASI), a U.S. biopharmaceutical company focused on developing and accelerating the launch of innovative therapeutics and pharmaceutical products in China, the U.S., and throughout the world, announces the official product launch of melphalan hydrochloride for injection (EVOMELA) in China which is the first commercial product launch for CASI. EVOMELA uses Ligand’s Captisol technology in its formulation.

Melphalan hydrochloride for injection (EVOMELA) received market approval by the China National Medical Products Administration (NMPA) for use as high-dose conditioning treatment prior to hematopoietic progenitor (stem) cell transplant in patients with multiple myeloma, and as a palliative treatment of patients with multiple myeloma for whom oral therapy is not appropriate. It is the only approved melphalan product available in China.

About Multiple Myeloma

Multiple myeloma is a malignant hematological disorder that is characterized by abnormal proliferation of clonal plasma cells in the bone marrow and the secretion of monoclonal immunoglobulins that are detectable in the serum or urine. CASI Pharmaceuticals estimates that multiple myeloma accounts for 10-13% of hematological malignancies1,2 and in Western countries, the estimated incidence is 5.6 cases per 100,000 persons2. The estimated incidence of multiple myeloma in China is ~2.0 cases per 100,000 persons3, for an estimated annual incidence of approximately 27,8003. The estimated number of patients in China with multiple myeloma who are candidates for hematopoietic progenitor (stem) cell transplantation is estimated to be approximately 16,900/year. The current number of patients with multiple myeloma who undergo hematopoietic progenitor (stem) cell transplantation in China is estimated to be approximately 800/year. Autologous stem cell transplantation (ASCT) has been demonstrated to improve complete response rates and prolong median overall survival in patients with multiple myeloma1,3 and is considered standard of care for transplant-eligible patients. The preferred conditioning regimen for ASCT is melphalan1.

 

  1. S. Rajkumar, Mayo Clin Proc. 2016 January; 91(1): 101–119
  2. A. Palumbo, N Engl J Med, 2011; 364: 1046-60
  3. J. Lu, Blood Cancer Journal (2014) 4, e239; doi:10.1038/bcj.2014.55

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