Adcetris or brentuximab vedotin

Adcetris or brentuximab vedotin

This patient-friendly article is about chemotherapy drug, Brentuximab Vedotin or Adcetris which is a chemotherapy drug that belongs in the classification of monoclonal antibody and antineoplastic for the treatment of cHL (classical Hodgkin lymphoma) and ALCL (systemic anaplastic large cell lymphoma).

The new ’biologic’ drug made by Seattle Genetics was approved by the FDA in 2011. It targets lymphoma and costs roughly 9,000 pounds or $16,000 US a month. The mean increased survival time in research was 7 months. 

Approved by

the Medical Board. 

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Adcetris consists of a drug and an antibody - an antibody-drug conjugate - the antibody directs the drug to CD30, a target on lymphoma cells. It was approved under the FDA’s accelerated approval programme. However the FDA approved Adcetris after evaluating a single-arm clinical trial with only 102 participants. Patients received only Adcetris.

The human study’s endpoint was objective response rate - what percentage of participants’ tumours either shrank or disappeared altogether after treatment. 73% of them achieved either a partial or complete response and responded to therapy for 6.7 months (average).

The systemic ALCL single-arm clinical trial involved only 58 patients. They received only Adcetris. The primary endpoint was the same; Objective response rate. 86% of them achieved either a partial or complete response, and responded for 12.6 months (average).

An infusion of Brentuximab is given over 30 minutes. The dosage received can depend on other factors such as weight and the state of patient’s health.

Side effects seem the usual nausea, fatigue, white cell decline, upper respiratory infection and sickness.


Hematologic toxicities, peripheral neuropathy, severe infections and hepatotoxicity.

Damaging the embryo (embryo-fetal toxicity) if the medical drug is used during pregnancy.

Go to: 10 ways to improve your chemotherapy success and reduce side-effects

Other articles that you may find interesting are:

  1. A diet for Chemotherapy
  2. Immunotherapy overview
  3. A to Z Guide to Complementary Therapies

Go to: Return to the CANCERactive drug list


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