Skip to main page content
Access keys NCBI Homepage MyNCBI Homepage Main Content Main Navigation
, 8 (5), 935-42

Approval Summary for Imatinib Mesylate Capsules in the Treatment of Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia

  • PMID: 12006504

Approval Summary for Imatinib Mesylate Capsules in the Treatment of Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia

Martin H Cohen et al. Clin Cancer Res.


Purpose: Chronic myelogenous leukemia (CML) results from the breakpoint cluster region-Abl fusion gene product, a tyrosine kinase involved in cell division and apoptosis. Imatinib, an orally administered inhibitor of the breakpoint cluster region-Abl tyrosine kinase, is capable of blocking proliferation and inducing apoptosis in CML cell lines. In this report, we describe the preclinical profile of imatinib and the data submitted in the New Drug Application that led to its marketing approval.

Experimental design: Chemistry manufacturing and controls, animal toxicology, and biopharmaceutical data are described. Results of Phase I and Phase II clinical studies in patients with CML in blast crisis (CML-BC), in accelerated phase (CML-AP), and in chronic phase disease-resistant or intolerant to IFN-alpha (CML-CP) are summarized. The basis for marketing approval and postmarketing commitments by the pharmaceutical company are discussed.

Results: Toxicology studies in the rat, dog, and monkey show the hematological, renal, and hepatobiliary toxicity of imatinib. Pharmacokinetic studies in patients with CML demonstrate 98% imatinib bioavailability. The elimination half-lives of the parent drug and the major active metabolite, CGP74588, from plasma are approximately 18 and 40 h, respectively. Approximately 81% of the drug is eliminated in 7 days, 68% in the feces and 13% in the urine. Cytochrome P-450 3A4 is the main enzyme responsible for imatinib metabolism. Phase I and II clinical studies were conducted. The Phase I study, in 83 CML patients, evaluated oral imatinib doses from 25 to 1000 mg/day. Dose-limiting toxicity was not observed. The three Phase II studies, in CML-CP, CML-AP, and CML-BC, enrolled 1027 patients. CML-CP patients received 400 mg/day imatinib, whereas CML-AP and CML-BC patients generally received 600 mg/day imatinib. Primary study endpoints were cytogenetic response rate (CML-CP) and hematological response rate (CML-AP and CML-BC). The cytogenetic response rate for CML-CP patients was 49%. The hematological response rate of CML-AP and CML-BC patients was 63 and 26%, respectively. The most common imatinib adverse events were nausea, vomiting, myalgia, edema, and diarrhea. Elevated liver enzymes and/or bilirubin were reported in 27 patients (2.6%).

Conclusions: On May 10, 2001, imatinib mesylate (Gleevec, formerly known as STI-571 and Glivec), manufactured and distributed by Novartis Pharmaceuticals, East Hanover, NJ, was approved by the United States Food and Drug Administration for the treatment of CML in three clinical settings: CML-BC, CML-AP, and CML-CP. This report summarizes the Food and Drug Administration's review of the New Drug Application.

Similar articles

See all similar articles

Cited by 109 PubMed Central articles

See all "Cited by" articles

MeSH terms

LinkOut - more resources