Polatuzumab vedotin in combination with rituximab and bendamustine for the treatment of diffuse large B-cell lymphoma
Polatuzumab vedotin in combination with rituximab and bendamustine is in clinical development for previously treated adult patients with relapsed or refractory (R/R) diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL) who are not candidates for hematopoietic stem cell transplant. DLBCL is a cancer affecting a type of white blood cells called lymphocytes or B-cells. It is the most common form of non-Hodgkin lymphoma among adults, though it can also occur in children and young adults in rare cases. DLBCL is an aggressive cancer and although it can be cured in more than half of people affected, it remains a serious and life threatening disease, particularly when it relapses or does not respond to treatment.
Polatuzumab vedotin is a first-in-class antibody drug specifically developed for the treatment of cancers that affect the blood and lymph system. It is a monoclonal antibody that acts by selectively binding to CD79b, a protein which is abundantly expressed on the surface of B-cells. It is administered as an intravenous infusion, absorbed by the cancer cells and the chemotherapy agent linked to the antibody releases inside the cancer cells and destroys them. Adding polatuzumab vedotin to bendamustine with rituximab may improve effectiveness in patients whose disease had come back or in whom other treatment had not worked well enough.