REVLIMID (lenalidomide)

REVLIMID (lenalidomide)capsules

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REVLIMID (lenalidomide)

REVLIMID, a thalidomide analogue, is an immunomodulatory agent with antiangiogenic and antineoplastic properties. The chemical name is 3-(4-amino-1-oxo 1,3- dihydro-2H-isoindol-2-yl) piperidine-2,6-dione.

The empirical formula for lenalidomide is C13H13N3O3, and the gram molecular weight is 259.3.

Lenalidomide is an off-white to pale-yellow solid powder. It is soluble in organic solvent/water mixtures, and buffered aqueous solvents. Lenalidomide is more soluble in organic solvents and low pH solutions. Solubility was significantly lower in less acidic buffers, ranging from about 0.4 to 0.5 mg/ml. Lenalidomide has an asymmetric carbon atom and can exist as the optically active forms S(-) and R(+), and is produced as a racemic mixture with a net optical rotation of zero.

REVLIMID is available in 2.5 mg, 5 mg, 10 mg, 15 mg, 20 mg and 25 mg capsules for oral administration. Each capsule contains lenalidomide as the active ingredient and the following inactive ingredients: lactose anhydrous, microcrystalline cellulose, croscarmellose sodium, and magnesium stearate. The 5 mg and 25 mg capsule shell contains gelatin, titanium dioxide and black ink. The 2.5 mg and 10 mg capsule shell contains gelatin, FD&C blue #2, yellow iron oxide, titanium dioxide and black ink. The 15 mg capsule shell contains gelatin, FD&C blue #2, titanium dioxide and black ink. The 20 mg capsule shell contains gelatin, FD&C blue #2, yellow iron oxide, titanium dioxide and black ink.

Indications and usage

Multiple Myeloma: REVLIMID in combination with dexamethasone is indicated for the treatment of patients with multiple myeloma (MM).

REVLIMID is indicated as maintenance therapy in patients with MM following autologous hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (auto-HSCT).

Myelodysplastic Syndromes: REVLIMID is indicated for the treatment of patients with transfusion-dependent anemia due to low- or intermediate-1-risk myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS) associated with a deletion 5q cytogenetic abnormality with or without additional cytogenetic abnormalities.

Mantle Cell Lymphoma: REVLIMID is indicated for the treatment of patients with mantle cell lymphoma (MCL) whose disease has relapsed or progressed after two prior therapies, one of which included bortezomib.

Limitations of Use

REVLIMID is not indicated and is not recommended for the treatment of patients with CLL outside of controlled clinical trials.

Mechanism of Action

Lenalidomide is an analogue of thalidomide with immunomodulatory, antiangiogenic, and antineoplastic properties. Cellular activities of lenalidomide are mediated through its target cereblon, a component of a cullin ring E3 ubiquitin ligase enzyme complex. In vitro, in the presence of drug, substrate proteins (including Aiolos, Ikaros, and CK1α) are targeted for ubiquitination and subsequent degradation leading to direct cytotoxic and immunomodulatory effects. Lenalidomide inhibits proliferation and induces apoptosis of certain hematopoietic tumor cells including MM, mantle cell lymphoma, and del (5q) myelodysplastic syndromes in vitro. Lenalidomide causes a delay in tumor growth in some in vivo nonclinical hematopoietic tumor models including MM. Immunomodulatory properties of lenalidomide include increased number and activation of T cells and natural killer (NK) cells leading to direct and enhanced antibody-dependent cell-mediated cytotoxicity (ADCC) via increased secretion of interleukin-2 and interferon-gamma, increased numbers of NKT cells, and inhibition of pro-inflammatory cytokines (e.g., TNF-α and IL-6) by monocytes. In MM cells, the combination of lenalidomide and dexamethasone synergizes the inhibition of cell proliferation and the induction of apoptosis.

Dosage and administration

REVLIMID should be taken orally at about the same time each day, either with or without food. REVLIMID capsules should be swallowed whole with water. The capsules should not be opened, broken, or chewed.

Multiple Myeloma: The recommended starting dose of REVLIMID is 25 mg orally once daily on Days 1-21 of repeated 28-day cycles in combination with dexamethasone. For patients > 75 years old, the starting dose of dexamethasone may be reduced.

Treatment should be continued until disease progression or unacceptable toxicity. In patients who are not eligible for auto-HSCT, treatment should continue until disease progression or unacceptable toxicity.

For patients who are auto-HSCT-eligible, hematopoietic stem cell mobilization should occur within 4 cycles of a REVLIMID-containing therapy.

Dose Adjustments for Hematologic Toxicities During MM Treatment: Dose modification are recommended to manage Grade 3 or 4 neutropenia or thrombocytopenia or other Grade 3 or 4 toxicity judged to be related to REVLIMID.

REVLIMID Maintenance Therapy Following Auto-HSCT: Following auto-HSCT, initiate REVLIMID maintenance therapy after adequate hematologic recovery (ANC ≥ 1000/mcL and/or platelet counts ≥75,000/mcL). The recommended starting dose of REVLIMID is 10 mg once daily continuously (Days 1-28 of repeated 28-day cycles) until disease progression or unacceptable toxicity. After 3 cycles of maintenance therapy, the dose can be increased to 15 mg once daily if tolerated.

Myelodysplastic Syndromes: The recommended starting dose of REVLIMID is 10 mg daily. Treatment is continued or modified based upon clinical and laboratory findings.

Mantle Cell Lymphoma: The recommended starting dose of REVLIMID is 25 mg/day orally on Days 1-21 of repeated 28-day cycles for relapsed or refractory mantle cell lymphoma. Treatment should be continued until disease progression or unacceptable toxicity. Treatment is continued, modified or discontinued based upon clinical and laboratory findings.


Pregnancy: REVLIMID can cause fetal harm when administered to a pregnant female. Limb abnormalities were seen in the offspring of monkeys that were dosed with lenalidomide during organogenesis. This effect was seen at all doses tested. Due to the results of this developmental monkey study, and lenalidomide’s structural similarities to thalidomide, a known human teratogen, lenalidomide is contraindicated in females who are pregnant. If this drug is used during pregnancy or if the patient becomes pregnant while taking this drug, the patient should be apprised of the potential risk to a fetus.

Severe Hypersensitivity Reactions: REVLIMID is contraindicated in patients who have demonstrated severe hypersensitivity (e.g., angioedema, Stevens-Johnson syndrome, toxic epidermal necrolysis) to lenalidomide

Warnings and precautions

Embryo-Fetal Toxicity: REVLIMID is a thalidomide analogue and is contraindicated for use during pregnancy. Thalidomide is a known human teratogen that causes life-threatening human birth defects or embryo-fetal death. An embryo-fetal development study in monkeys indicates that lenalidomide produced malformations in the offspring of female monkeys who received the drug during pregnancy, similar to birth defects observed in humans following exposure to thalidomide during pregnancy

Hematologic Toxicity: REVLIMID can cause significant neutropenia and thrombocytopenia. Monitor patients with neutropenia for signs of infection. Advise patients to observe for bleeding or bruising, especially with use of concomitant medication that may increase risk of bleeding. Patients taking REVLIMID should have their complete blood counts assessed periodically.

Patients taking REVLIMID in combination with dexamethasone or as REVLIMID maintenance therapy for MM should have their complete blood counts (CBC) assessed every 7 days (weekly) for the first 2 cycles, on Days 1 and 15 of Cycle 3, and every 28 days (4 weeks) thereafter. A dose interruption and/or dose reduction may be required.

Venous and Arterial Thromboembolism: Venous thromboembolic events (VTE [DVT and PE]) and arterial thromboembolic events (ATE, myocardial infarction and stroke) are increased in patients treated with REVLIMID.


Patients with known risk factors, including prior thrombosis, may be at greater risk and actions should be taken to try to minimize all modifiable factors (e.g. hyperlipidemia, hypertension, smoking).

Increased Mortality in Patients with CLL: In a prospective randomized (1:1) clinical trial in the first line treatment of patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia, single agent REVLIMID therapy increased the risk of death as compared to single agent chlorambucil. In an interim analysis, there were 34 deaths among 210 patients on the REVLIMID treatment arm compared to 18 deaths among 211 patients in the chlorambucil treatment arm, and hazard ratio for overall survival was 1.92 [95% CI: 1.08 – 3.41], consistent with a 92% increase in the risk of death. The trial was halted for safety in July 2013.

Serious adverse cardiovascular reactions, including atrial fibrillation, myocardial infarction, and cardiac failure occurred more frequently in the REVLIMID treatment arm. REVLIMID is not indicated and not recommended for use in CLL outside of controlled clinical trials.

Second Primary Malignancies: Patients who received REVLIMID-containing therapy until disease progression did not show a higher incidence of invasive SPM than patients treated in the fixed duration REVLIMID-containing arms. Monitor patients for the development of second primary malignancies. Take into account both the potential benefit of REVLIMID and the risk of second primary malignancies when considering treatment with REVLIMID.

Hepatotoxicity: Hepatic failure, including fatal cases, has occurred in patients treated with lenalidomide in combination with dexamethasone. In clinical trials, 15% of patients experienced hepatotoxicity (with hepatocellular, cholestatic and mixed characteristics); 2% of patients with MM and 1% of patients with myelodysplasia had serious hepatotoxicity events. The mechanism of drug-induced hepatotoxicity is unknown. Pre-existing viral liver disease, elevated baseline liver enzymes, and concomitant medications may be risk factors. Monitor liver enzymes periodically. Stop REVLIMID upon elevation of liver enzymes. After return to baseline values, treatment at a lower dose may be considered.

Tumor Lysis Syndrome: Fatal instances of tumor lysis syndrome have been reported during treatment with lenalidomide. The patients at risk of tumor lysis syndrome are those with high tumor burden prior to treatment. These patients should be monitored closely and appropriate precautions taken.

Tumor Flare Reaction: Tumor flare reaction has occurred during investigational use of lenalidomide for CLL and lymphoma, and is characterized by tender lymph node swelling, low grade fever, pain and rash. REVLIMID is not indicated and not recommended for use in CLL outside of controlled clinical trials.

Impaired Stem Cell Mobilization: A decrease in the number of CD34+ cells collected after treatment (> 4 cycles) with REVLIMID has been reported. In patients who are auto-HSCT candidates, referral to a transplant center should occur early in treatment to optimize the timing of the stem cell collection. In patients who received more than 4 cycles of a REVLIMIDcontaining treatment or for whom inadequate numbers of CD 34+ cells have been collected with G-CSF alone, G-CSF with cyclophosphamide or the combination of GCSF with a CXCR4 inhibitor may be considered.

Adverse reactions

  • Embryo-Fetal Toxicity
  • Hematologic Toxicity
  • Venous and Arterial Thromboembolism
  • Increased Mortality in Patients with CLL
  • Second Primary Malignancies
  • Increased Mortality in Patients with MM When Pembrolizumab Is Added to a Thalidomide Analogue and Dexamethasone
  • Hepatotoxicity
  • Severe Cutaneous Reactions Including Hypersensitivity Reactions
  • Tumor Lysis Syndrome
  • Tumor Flare Reactions
  • Impaired Stem Cell Mobilization
  • Thyroid Disorders
  • Early Mortality in Patients with MCL
Use in specific populations

Pregnancy: Based on the mechanism of action and findings from animal studies, REVLIMID can cause embryo-fetal harm when administered to a pregnant female and is contraindicated during pregnancy.

REVLIMID is a thalidomide analogue. Thalidomide is a human teratogen, inducing a high frequency of severe and life-threatening birth defects such as amelia (absence of limbs), phocomelia (short limbs), hypoplasticity of the bones, absence of bones, external ear abnormalities (including anotia, micropinna, small or absent external auditory canals), facial palsy, eye abnormalities (anophthalmos, microphthalmos), and congenital heart defects. Alimentary tract, urinary tract, and genital malformations have also been documented and mortality at or shortly after birth has been reported in about 40% of infants.

Lactation: There is no information regarding the presence of lenalidomide in human milk, the effects of REVLIMID on the breastfed infant, or the effects of REVLIMID on milk production. Because many drugs are excreted in human milk and because of the potential for adverse reactions in breastfed infants from REVLIMID, advise women not to breastfeed during treatment with REVLIMID.

Females and Males of Reproductive Potential

Females of reproductive potential must commit either to abstain continuously from heterosexual sexual intercourse or to use 2 methods of reliable birth control simultaneously: one highly effective form of contraception – tubal ligation, IUD, hormonal (birth control pills, injections, hormonal patches, vaginal rings, or implants), or partner’s vasectomy, and 1 additional effective contraceptive method – male latex or synthetic condom, diaphragm, or cervical cap. Contraception must begin 4 weeks prior to initiating treatment with REVLIMID, during therapy, during dose interruptions, and continuing for 4 weeks following discontinuation of REVLIMID therapy. Reliable contraception is indicated even where there has been a history of infertility, unless due to hysterectomy. Females of reproductive potential should be referred to a qualified provider of contraceptive methods, if needed.

Lenalidomide is present in the semen of males who take REVLIMID. Therefore, males must always use a latex or synthetic condom during any sexual contact with females of reproductive potential while taking REVLIMID and for up to 4 weeks after discontinuing REVLIMID, even if they have undergone a successful vasectomy. Male patients taking REVLIMID must not donate sperm.

Pediatric Use: Safety and effectiveness have not been established in pediatric patients.


There is no specific experience in the management of lenalidomide overdose in patients with MM, MDS, or MCL. In dose-ranging studies in healthy subjects, some were exposed to up to 200 mg (administered 100 mg BID) and in single-dose studies, some subjects were exposed to up to 400 mg. Pruritus, urticaria, rash, and elevated liver transaminases were the primary reported AEs. In clinical trials, the dose-limiting toxicity was neutropenia and thrombocytopenia.


Store at 20°C – 25°C (68°F – 77°F); excursions permitted to 15°C – 30°C (59°F – 86°F) [See USP Controlled Room Temperature].

Handling and Disposal

Care should be exercised in the handling of REVLIMID. REVLIMID capsules should not be opened or broken. If powder from REVLIMID contacts the skin, wash the skin immediately and thoroughly with soap and water. If REVLIMID contacts the mucous membranes, flush thoroughly with water. Procedures for the proper handling and disposal of anticancer drugs should be considered. Several guidelines on the subject have been published. Dispense no more than a 28-day supply.

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