Meeting highlights from the Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use (CHMP) 11-14 November 2019 (updated)

News 15/11/2019

Seven new medicines recommended for approval

EMA’s human medicines committee (CHMP) recommended seven medicines for approval at its November 2019 meeting.

The Committee recommended granting a marketing authorisation for Isturisa* (osilodrostat) for the treatment of Cushing’s syndrome, a rare disorder that occurs when the body produces too much corticosteroid hormone. It leads to patients experiencing weight gain, fat build-up on the face and bruising.

Mayzent (siponimod) received a positive opinion for the treatment of adult patients with secondary progressive multiple sclerosis with active disease evidenced by relapses or imaging features of inflammatory activity.

The Committee recommended granting a conditional marketing authorisation for Polivy* (polatuzumab vedotin) for the treatment of relapsed/refractory diffuse large B-cell lymphoma, a rare type of cancer of the white blood cells. Polivy was supported through EMA’s PRIority MEdicines (PRIME) scheme.**

The CHMP adopted a positive opinion for Sunosi (solriamfetol), for the treatment of excessive daytime sleepiness in patients with narcolepsy (a sleep disorder that causes a person to fall asleep suddenly and unexpectedly) and obstructive sleep apnoea (interruption of breathing).

Tavlesse (fostamatinib) received a positive opinion from the CHMP for the treatment of primary immune thrombocytopenia. This is an acquired immune-mediated disorder characterised by the destruction of platelets and impaired platelet production.

The CHMP recommended granting marketing authorisations for two generic medicines: Clopidogrel/Acetylsalicylic acid Mylan (clopidogrel / acetylsalicylic acid), for the secondary prevention of atherothrombotic events (problems caused by blood clots and hardening of the arteries); and Deferasirox Accord (deferasirox), for the treatment of chronic iron overload due to blood transfusions in patients with beta thalassaemia and other anaemias.

Start of re-examination of recommendation for new medicine

The applicant for Hopveus (sodium oxybate) has requested a re-examination of the Committee's negative opinion for this medicine adopted at the October 2019 meeting. The CHMP will re-examine the opinion and issue a final recommendation. For more information on this negative opinion, please see the question-and-answer document in the grid below.

Two recommendations on extensions of therapeutic indication

The Committee recommended extensions of indication for Kadcyla and Revlimid.

Outcome of review on Lemtrada

The Committee recommended restricting the use of the multiple sclerosis medicine Lemtrada (alemtuzumab) due to reports of rare but serious side effects, including deaths. New measures to identify and manage the serious side effects are also recommended. The side effects include cardiovascular disorders (affecting the heart, circulation and bleeding as well as stroke) and immune-related disorders (caused by the body’s defence system not working properly).

For more information, please see the public health recommendation in the grid below.

Outcome of review on Xeljanz

The CHMP concluded that Xeljanz (tofacitinib) could increase the risk of blood clots in the lungs and in deep veins in patients who are already at high risk. As a result, the Committee recommended that Xeljanz should be used with caution in all patients at high risk of blood clots. In addition, the maintenance doses of 10 mg twice daily should not be used in patients with ulcerative colitis who are at high risk of blood clots unless there is no suitable alternative treatment. Due to an increased risk of infections, patients older than 65 years of age should be treated with Xeljanz only when there is no alternative treatment.

For more information, please see the public health recommendation in the grid below.

Withdrawals of applications

Applications for initial marketing authorisations for Linhaliq (ciprofloxacin) and Luxceptar (viable T-cells) have been withdrawn. Linhaliq was intended for the treatment and prevention of flare-ups of non-cystic fibrosis bronchiectasis in patients with long-term lung infection caused by Pseudomonas aeruginosa bacteria. Luxceptar was intended for the treatment of patients with blood cancers who are receiving a type of blood stem cell transplant.

The application to extend the use of Opsumit (macitentan) to treat chronic thromboembolic pulmonary hypertension, a condition that causes high blood pressure in the lungs, was also withdrawn.

Question-and-answer documents on these withdrawals are available in the grid below.

Agenda and minutes

The agenda of the November meeting is published on EMA's website. Minutes of the October 2019 CHMP meeting will be published in the coming weeks.

CHMP statistics

Key figures from the November 2019 CHMP meeting are represented in the graphic below.

* This product was designated as an orphan medicine during its development. Orphan designations are reviewed by EMA's Committee for Orphan Medicinal Products (COMP) at the time of approval to determine whether the information available to date allows maintaining the medicine's orphan status and granting the medicine ten years of market exclusivity.

** Information on PRIME added on 18/11/2019.

CHMP statistics: November 2019

Positive recommendations on new medicines

Name of medicineIsturisa
Therapeutic indicationTreatment of Cushing's syndrome
Marketing-authorisation applicantNovartis Europharm Limited
More informationIsturisa: Pending EC decision


Name of medicineMayzent
Marketing-authorisation applicantNovartis Europharm Limited
Therapeutic indicationTreatment of adult patients with secondary progressive multiple sclerosis with active disease
More informationMayzent: Pending EC decision


Name of medicinePolivy 
INNpolatuzumab vedotin
Marketing-authorisation applicantRoche Registration GmbH
Therapeutic indicationTreatment of relapsed / refractory diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL) in combination with bendamustine and rituximab
More informationPolivy: Pending EC decision


Name of medicineSunosi
Marketing-authorisation applicantJazz Pharmaceuticals Ireland Limited
Therapeutic indicationTreatment of excessive daytime sleepiness in narcolepsy and obstructive sleep apnoea
More informationSunosi: Pending EC decision


Name of medicineTavlesse
Marketing-authorisation applicantRigel Pharmaceuticals B.V.
Therapeutic indicationTreatment of primary immune thrombocytopenia
More informationTavlesse: Pending EC decision


Positive recommendation on new generic medicine

Name of medicineClopidogrel / Acetylsalicylic acid Mylan 
INNclopidogrel / acetylsalicylic acid 
Marketing-authorisation applicantMylan S.A.S
Therapeutic indicationSecondary prevention of atherothrombotic events 
More informationClopidogrel/Acetylsalicylic acid Mylan: Pending EC decisio 


Name of medicineDeferasirox Accord 
Marketing-authorisation applicantAccord Healthcare S.L.U.
Therapeutic indicationTreatment of chronic iron overload due to blood transfusions in patients with beta thalassaemia and other anaemias
More informationDeferasirox Accord: Pending EC decision


Start of re-examination of recommendation for new medicine

Name of medicineHopveus
INNsodium oxybate
Marketing-authorisation applicantD&A Pharma
Therapeutic indicationTreatment of alcohol dependence
More informationHopveus: Pending EC decision


Positive recommendations on extensions of indications

Name of medicineKadcyla
INNtrastuzumab emtansine 
Marketing-authorisation holderRoche Registration GmbH
More informationKadcyla: Pending EC decision


Name of medicineRevlimid 
Marketing-authorisation holderCelgene Europe B.V.
More informationRevlimid: Pending EC decision


Public-health recommendations

Withdrawals of initial marketing authorisation applications

Name of medicineLinhaliq
Marketing-authorisation applicantAradigm Pharmaceuticals Limited
More informationLinhaliq: Withdrawn application


Name of medicineLuxceptar
INNviable T-cells
Marketing-authorisation applicantKiadis Pharma Netherlands B.V.
More informationLuxceptar: Withdrawn application


Withdrawal of extension of indication application

Name of medicineOpsumit
Marketing-authorisation holderJanssen-Cilag International NV 
More informationOpsumit: Withdrawn application


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