Vertex Announces Reimbursement Agreement in Australia for ORKAMBI® (lumacaftor/ivacaftor) for People with Cystic Fibrosis Ages Six Years and Older with Two Copies of the F508del Mutation
- Approximately 1,300 patients in
- A pathway to access for future Vertex CF medicine, tezacaftor/ivacaftor, has also been established -
“We are delighted that lumacaftor/ivacaftor will be made available to
eligible CF patients in Australia,” said
Australians with CF join thousands of patients worldwide who are already
receiving lumacaftor/ivacaftor. Beyond
Cystic fibrosis is a rare, life-shortening genetic disease affecting approximately 75,000 people including countries within
CF is caused by a defective or missing CFTR protein resulting from mutations in the CFTR gene. Children must inherit two defective CFTR genes — one from each parent — to have CF. There are approximately 2,000 known mutations in the CFTR gene. Some of these mutations, which can be determined by a genetic test, or genotyping test, lead to CF by creating non-working or too few CFTR proteins at the cell surface. The defective function or absence of CFTR protein results in poor flow of salt and water into and out of the cell in a number of organs. In the lungs, this leads to the build-up of abnormally thick, sticky mucus that can cause chronic lung infections and progressive lung damage in many patients that eventually leads to death. The median age of death is in the mid-to-late 20s.
About ORKAMBI® (lumacaftor/ivacaftor) and
the F508del mutation
In people with two copies of the F508del mutation, the CFTR protein is not processed and trafficked normally within the cell, resulting in little-to-no CFTR protein at the cell surface. Patients with two copies of the F508del mutation are easily identified by a simple genetic test.
ORKAMBI is a combination of lumacaftor, which is designed to increase the amount of mature protein at the cell surface by targeting the processing and trafficking defect of the F508del-CFTR protein, and ivacaftor, which is designed to enhance the function of the CFTR protein once it reaches the cell surface. Lumacaftor/ivacaftor is available as tablets and is typically taken twice per day.
For complete product information, please see the Summary of Product Characteristics that can be found on www.ema.europa.eu.
Vertex is a global biotechnology company that invests in scientific innovation to create transformative medicines for people with serious and life-threatening diseases. In addition to clinical development programs in CF, Vertex has more than a dozen ongoing research programs focused on the underlying mechanisms of other serious diseases.
Founded in 1989 in
Special Note Regarding Forward-looking Statements
This press release contains forward-looking statements as defined in the
Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, including, without
limitation, Mr. Arbuckle’s statements in the second paragraph of this
press release. While Vertex believes the forward-looking statements
contained in this press release are accurate, there are a number of
factors that could cause actual events or results to differ materially
from those indicated by such forward-looking statements. Those risks and
uncertainties include, among other things, risks related to
commercializing ORKAMBI and the other risks listed under Risk Factors in
Vertex's annual report and quarterly reports filed with the
Vertex Pharmaceuticals Incorporated
Michael Partridge, +1-617-341-6108
Eric Rojas, +1-617-961-7205
Zach Barber, +1-617-341-6470
Heather Nichols, + 1-617-341-6992
Europe & Australia:
Marie von Seyfried, + 44 7933 500887