The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved U.S. sales of the enzyme-replacement drug Lumizyme, the first treatment in the U.S. specifically for late-onset Pompe disease.
The decision was reported via press release by the drug's manufacturer, Genzyme of Cambridge, Mass., and comes three weeks ahead of the scheduled decision date of June 17, 2010. (For more on Lumizyme's development, see Lumizyme on the Horizon.)
Lumizyme (alglucosidase alfa) is a laboratory-developed enzyme used to replace the acid maltase enzyme deficient in people with Pompe disease ages 8 and older.
Genzyme received FDA approval in 2006 to market Myozyme, the first-ever U.S. treatment for infants and children with Pompe disease. Due to limited production capacity, Myozyme has been reserved for children 17 and younger.
MDA-supported basic research played a role in the development of these enzyme-replacement drugs.
Meaning for people with Pompe disease
Severely affected adults who have been receiving alglucosidase alfa through a program known as the Alglucosidase Alfa Temporary Access Program (ATAP) will continue to receive therapy as they transition to the commercial supply.
Those who have been waiting for treatment should contact their physician about getting access to the new medication.