Boost for GSK as blood cancer drug Blenrep hits key goal in a late-stage trial

GSK’s blood cancer drug has reached a key goal in a late-stage trial after a series of setbacks.

The results are a major boost for the pharma giant.

The trial found that Blenrep, when combined with existing drug bortezomib plus steroid dexamethasone, extended the time before relapsed or refractory multiple myeloma progressed, or those suffering from the disease died.

The disease is the third most common type of blood cancer which is considered difficult to treat. 

And last year, Blenrep was pulled from US markets after it failed a separate late-stage study designed to show it was better than an existing treatment on the market.

Trial success: GSK’s blood cancer drug Blenrep has reached a key goal in a late-stage trial after a series of setbacks

In September, the EU’s drug regulator also recommended against renewing the conditional marketing authorisation for Blenrep, in a setback to the key oncology unit that GSK has been looking to strengthen.

A move to bring the drug back to the market or expand its usage following the results of the latest study would boost for the company. 

The drug belongs to a promising category of treatments called antibody-drug conjugates, which are engineered antibodies that bind to tumour cells and then release cell-killing chemicals.

A ‘strong and clinically meaningful overall survival trend was also observed’, GSK added.

Blenrep, which was the second-largest contributor to GSK’s oncology business in 2022, has made about £30million of sales so far this year.