PBS cancer drugs seek test funding

By Megan Brodie 3 years ago | In Products, Regulatory
  • 3 years ago

19 March 2021

Roche, AstraZeneca and Pierre Fabre have submitted companion tests to MSAC for funding consideration to accompany submissions made to PBAC at its meeting earlier this month.

MSAC will hold its first meeting for 2021 on 31 March and 1 April and consider companion tests for TECENTRIQ (atezolizumab), LYNPARZA (olaparib) and BRAFTOVI (encorafenib) put forward by Roche, AstraZeneca and Pierre Fabre respectively.

Roche is seeking funded access for a PD-L1 test for access to Tecentriq as a first line therapy for patients with locally advanced or metastatic triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC). TNBC accounts for up to one in five breast cancer cases and has worse outcomes compared to other breast cancers. The US approved Tecentriq for these patients two years ago.

Listed on the PBS three years ago for non-small cell lung cancer, Roche’s checkpoint inhibitor has since expanded into liver cancer and a positive recommendation from the PBAC will pave the way for it to be the first in its class to be reimbursed for breast cancer.

Also looking to expand its PBS footprint is Lynparza, which listed on the PBS in 2017 for ovarian, fallopian tube or primary peritoneal cancer. AstraZeneca submitted the drug to the PBAC this month for consideration in metastatic castration resistant prostate cancer (mCRPC), with the companion test also before MSAC at its March meeting.

The tumour prostate tissue test detects the BRCA1/2 gene, or Ataxia-Telangiesctasia gene mutations, in men with mCRPC “to determine eligibility for PBS subsidised treatment with olaparib”.

Also before MSAC is an application to expand a current test for patients with metastatic colorectoral cancer to identify those who would benefit from Braftovi.

An existing test already identifies patients for Amgen’s VECTIBIX (panitumumab) and Merck’s ERBITUX (cetuximab), with Pierre Fabre looking to formalise the MBS item to ensure patients are reimbursed for the test covering the BRAF V600 mutation as well.

Braftovi first listed on the PBS in April 2020 for malignant melanoma.

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