Lenograstim: An Update of its Pharmacological Properties and Use in Chemotherapy-Induced Neutropenia and Related Clinical Settings

Dunn, C.J.; Goa, K.L.
March 2000
Drugs;Mar2000, Vol. 59 Issue 3, p681
Academic Journal
Lenograstim is the glycosylated recombinant form of human granulocyte colony stimulating factor. The drug is used to reduce the risk of life-threatening infection in patients with neutropenia, particularly after cytotoxic chemotherapy. Lenograstim accelerates neutrophil recovery significantly after chemotherapy, with beneficial effects on clinical end-points such as incidence of laboratory-confirmed infection and length of hospital stay. Chemotherapy dose intensity has also been increased in patients receiving lenograstim, notably those with breast or small cell lung cancer, although improvements in tumour response and survival have not been demonstrated. Lenograstim also assists neutrophil recovery in patients undergoing bone marrow transplantation, and stimulates the production of peripheral blood stem cells (PBSCs) for autologous transfusion after aggressive chemotherapy. Lenograstim also mobilises CD34+ cells more efficiently in unit dose terms than filgrastim and has been used successfully to mobilise PBSCs from healthy donors for allogeneic transplantation. Randomised trials have shown increases in rates of disease remission after lenograstim therapy in patients with acute myeloid leukaemia, with no evidence of stimulation of malignant blasts. The drug has also shown potential in the mobilisation of nonmalignant PBSCs for autotransplantation in patients with chronic myeloid leukaemia. Other studies show efficacy of lenograstim in patients with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia, aplastic anaemia, in children with severe chronic neutropenia and in the reversal of neutropenia related to antiretroviral therapy in patients with AIDS, although data are not extensive. Cost analyses of lenograstim have been carried out from a hospital perspective, although results have been inconclusive. Cost-effectiveness or cost-benefit data are lacking at present. Lenograstim is well tolerated, with bone pain and injection site reactions being reported most frequently in clinical trials. Conclusions: Lenograstim has been confirmed as a valuable adjunct to minimise the haematological toxicity of myelosuppressive chemotherapy in patients with malignant disease. The drug also enhances neutrophil recovery in patients undergoing stem cell rescue, and assists PBSC mobilisation. Data indicate clinical benefit with lenograstim in myeloid disorders, with no evidence of malignant blast cell proliferation. Further studies are required to assess more fully the pharmacoeconomic implications of the use of lenograstim and other recombinant growth factors, to provide more data on the efficacy of the drug in the management of disease-related neutropenia, and to clarify fully its position relative to filgrastim.



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