The Food and Drug Administration has granted accelerated approval to copanlisib (Aliqopa) for the treatment of adults with relapsed follicular lymphoma who have received at least two prior treatments.

Approval of the kinase inhibitor was based on an overall response rate of 59% in a single-arm trial of 104 patients with follicular B-cell non-Hodgkin lymphoma who had relapsed disease following at least two prior treatments. These patients had a complete or partial response for a median 12.2 months.

Previously, copanlisib was granted priority review and orphan drug designation. Common side effects included hyperglycemia, diarrhea, decreased general strength and energy, hypertension, leukopenia, neutropenia, nausea, lower respiratory tract infections, and thrombocytopenia, the FDA said in a press release .

“For patients with relapsed follicular lymphoma, the cancer often comes back even after multiple treatments,” Richard Pazdur, MD, director of the FDA’s Oncology Center of Excellence and acting director of the Office of Hematology and Oncology Products in the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research said in the press release. “Options are limited for these patients and today’s approval provides an additional choice for treatment, filling an unmet need for them,” he said.


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