Adcetris is made by combining a drug and an antibody (a protein normally made by the immune system that recognizes and attaches to an antigen). The antibody portion of Adcetris attaches to CD30, an antigen found on the surface of some lymphoma cells. Once attached, Adcetris enters the cell and releases the drug portion. The drug portion of Adcetris binds to tubulin, an important protein found inside the cells, causing the cell to die.
Is It Safe for Children to Use Adcetris?
This medication has not been adequately studied in children, and is not approved for use in this age group (usually defined as individuals younger than 18 years old). Talk to your child's healthcare provider about the risks and benefits of using Adcetris in children.
Can Older Adults Use It?
Clinical studies of Adcetris did not include enough older adults to determine if they respond differently to the drug than younger age groups. Older adults may be more sensitive to some Adcetris side effects, and therefore may need to be monitored more closely.
Off-Label Uses for Adcetris
On occasion, your healthcare provider may recommend this medication for treating something other than the conditions discussed in this article. This is called an "off-label" use. At this time, there are no well-accepted off-label uses for Adcetris. However, the medicine is being studied for the treatment of other types of lymphoma, leukemia, and multiple myeloma.
Food and Drug Administration (FDA) news release. FDA approves Adcetris to treat two types of lymphoma. Available at http://www.fda.gov/NewsEvents/Newsroom/PressAnnouncements/ucm268781.htm. Accessed March 16, 2012.
Freedman AS, Aster JC. Clinical manifestations, pathologic features, and diagnosis of anaplastic large cell lymphoma T/null cell type. In: UpToDate, Connor RF (Ed), UpToDate, Waltham, MA, 2012.
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