|Systematic (IUPAC) name|
|Trade names||Jakafi, Jakavi|
|Metabolism||Hepatic (mainly CYP3A4-mediated)|
|Excretion||Urine (74%), faeces (22%)|
|(what is this?)|
Ruxolitinib (INC424, INCB18424, trade names Jakafi and Jakavi, by Incyte Pharmaceuticals and Novartis) is a drug for the treatment of intermediate or high-risk myelofibrosis, a type of myeloproliferative disorder that affects the bone marrow. It is also being investigated for the treatment of other types of cancer (such as lymphomas and pancreatic cancer), for polycythemia vera, for plaque psoriasis, and for alopecia areata.
Mechanism of action
Ruxolitinib is a Janus kinase inhibitor with selectivity for subtypes JAK1 and JAK2 of this enzyme. Ruxolitinib inhibits dysregulated JAK signaling associated with myelofibrosis. JAK1 and JAK2 recruit signal transducers and activators of transcription (STATs) to cytokine receptors leading to modulation of gene expression.
Immunologic side effects have included herpes zoster (shingles; 1.9%) and case reports of opportunistic infections. Metabolic side effects have included weight gain (7.1%). Laboratory abnormalities have included alanine transaminase (ALT) abnormalities (25.2%), aspartate transaminase (AST) abnormalities (17.4%), and elevated cholesterol levels (16.8%). Other common adverse events are anemia (low red blood cell count) and thrombocytopenia (low blood platelet count). Grade 3 to 4 anemia occurs in up to 45% of patients and grade 3 to 4 thrombocytopenia occurs in 10% to 15% of cases, and requires medical intervention to return to near-baseline levels.
Clinical trials and approval
The phase III Controlled Myelofibrosis Study with Oral JAK Inhibitor-I (COMFORT-I) and COMFORT-II trials showed significant benefits by reducing spleen size, relieving debilitating symptoms, and improving overall survival.
In November 2011, ruxolitinib was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the treatment of intermediate or high-risk myelofibrosis based on results of the COMFORT-I and COMFORT-II Trials.
|This section is outdated. (October 2014)|
Some analysts believe this to be a potential blockbuster drug. As of the end of March 2012, and according to an Incyte spokesman, approximately 1000 physicians had prescribed the drug in the United States, out of a total 6500 hematologists and oncologists nationwide.
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- ASCO Annual Meeting 2011: JAK Inhibitor Ruxolitinib Demonstrates Significant Clinical Benefit in Myelofibrosis
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