Ruxience (rituximab-pvvr) for Inflammatory Diseases

RUXIENCE is a CD20-directed cytolytic antibody indicated for the treatment of:

  • Adult patients with Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma (NHL):
    • refractory or relapsed, low grade or follicular, CD20-positive B-cell NHL as a single agent.
    • Previously untreated follicular, CD20-positive, B-cell NHL in combination with first-line chemotherapy and, in patients achieving a complete or partial response to a rituximab product in combination with chemotherapy, as single-agent maintenance therapy.
    • Non-progressing, low-grade, CD20- positive, B-cell NHL as a single agent after first-line vincristine, cyclophosphamide, and prednisone chemotherapy.
    • Previously untreated diffuse large B-cell, CD20-positive NHL in combination with (cyclophosphamide, vincristine, doxorubicin, and prednisone) (CHOP) or other anthracycline-based chemotherapy regimens.
  • Adult patients with Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia (CLL):
    • Previously untreated and previously treated CD20-positive CLL in combination with fludarabine and cyclophosphamide.
  • Granulomatosis with Polyangiitis (GPA) (Wegener’s Granulomatosis) and Microscopic Polyangiitis (MPA):
    • in adult patients in combination with glucocorticoids.

What should I tell my doctor before receiving RUXIENCE?

Before receiving RUXIENCE, tell your doctor if you:

  • Have had a severe reaction to RUXIENCE or on any rituximab products.
  • Have a history of heart problems
  • Have lung or kidney problems.
  • Have had an infection or currently have an infection, or have a weak immune system.
  • Have or have had any of the following severe infections:
    • Hepatitis B virus (HBV), Hepatitis C virus (HCV), Cytomegalovirus (CMV), Herpes simplex virus (HSV), Parvovirus B19, Varicella zoster virus (chickenpox or shingles), and West Nile Virus.
  • Have had a recent vaccination or are planning to receive vaccinations. You should not receive certain vaccines before or during treatment with RUXIENCE.
  • If you have any other medical conditions.
  • If are pregnant or planning to become pregnant. Talk to your doctor about the risks to your unborn baby if you receive RUXIENCE during pregnancy. Females who are able to become pregnant: 
    • You should do a pregnancy test to see if you are pregnant before starting RUXIENCE and you should use effective birth control during treatment with RUXIENCE and also for 12 months straight after the last dose of RUXIENCE. You can talk to your doctor about birth control. Tell your doctor right away if you become pregnant or think that you are pregnant during treatment with RUXIENCE.
  • If you are breastfeeding or planning to breastfeed. RUXIENCE may pass into your breast milk. and make sure to not breastfeed during treatment (for 6 months after your last dose of RUXIENCE).
  • If you are taking any medications, prescriptions, over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements. Especially if you take or have taken:
    • a tumor necrosis factor (TNF) inhibitor medicine, or a disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drug (DMARD).

How will I receive RUXIENCE?

  • RUXIENCE is given by infusion through your or your child’s central catheter or through a needle placed in a vein, in your or your child’s arm. Talk to your doctor about how you or your child will receive RUXIENCE.
  • Your doctor may prescribe medicines before each infusion of RUXIENCE to reduce infusion side effects such as fever and chills.
  • Your doctor should do blood tests regularly to check for side effects of RUXIENCE.
  • Before each RUXIENCE treatment, your doctor will ask you questions about your or your child’s general health or if you have any symptoms.

Dosage and Administration

  • Administer only as an intravenous infusion.
  • Do not administer as an intravenous push or bolus.
  • RUXIENCE should only be administered by a doctor with appropriate medical support to manage severe infusion-related reactions that can be fatal if they occur.

Adult B-cell NHL:

  • The dose for NHL is 375 mg/m2 (2.2).

Adults with Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia:

  • The dose for CLL is 375 mg/m2 in the first cycle and 500 mg/m2 in cycles 2-6, in combination with FC, administered every 28 days.
  • The dose as a component of the Zevalinâ (ibritumomab tiuxetan) Therapeutic Regimen is 250 mg/m2.

Granulomatosis with Polyangiitis (GPA) (Wegener’s Granulomatosis) and Microscopic Polyangiitis (MPA) in adult patients:

  • The induction dose for patients with active GPA and MPA in combination with glucocorticoids is 375 mg/m2 once weekly for 4 weeks. The follow-up dose for patients with GPA and MPA who have achieved disease control with induction treatment, in combination with glucocorticoids is two 500 mg intravenous infusions separated by two weeks, followed by a 500 mg intravenous infusion every 6 months thereafter based on clinical evaluation.

What are the most common side effects during treatment with RUXIENCE?

The most common side effects of RUXIENCE include:

  • infusion-related reactions, infections, body aches, tiredness, and nausea.

In adults with granulomatosis with polyangiitis (GPA) and microscopic polyangiitis (MPA), the most common side effects of RUXIENCE also include:

  • low white and red blood cells, swelling, diarrhea, and muscle spasms

Other side effects include:

  • Aching joints after receiving an infusion, and frequent upper respiratory tract infections.

What are the serious side effects of RUXIENCE?

  • Infusion-related reactions: Infusion-related reactions are very common side effects of RUXIENCE. Serious infusion-related reactions can happen within 24 hours after you receive your RUXIENCE shot. Your doctor will give you medicines to reduce the serious side effects of RUXIENCE. If you experience any of these symptoms from an infusion of RUXIENCE, make sure to consult your doctor:
    • Hives or rash
    • Itching
    • Swelling of the face, lips, tongue, and throat
    • Sudden coughing
    • Shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, or wheezing
    • Feeling weakness
    • Dizziness or fainting
    • Palpitations (rising heartbeat), chest pain
  • Severe skin and mouth reactions: if you experience any of these symptoms during your treatment with RUXIENCE:
    • Ulcers on your skin, painful sores, lips, or in your mouth.
    • peeling of the skin, blisters, rashes, and pustules on the skin.
  • Hepatitis B virus Reactivation: before the RUXIENCE treatment, your doctor checks if you have HBV infection by conducting a blood test. If you have or had hepatitis B receiving RUXIENCE could cause the virus to become an active infection again. Hepatitis B reactivation may cause serious liver problems including death. If you get worsening tiredness, yellowing of your skin, or the white part of your eyes during treatment with RUXIENCE, contact your doctor. 
  • Progressive Multifocal Leukoencephalopathy (PML): PML is a rare, serious brain infection that can happen in people who receive RUXIENCE. It can result in death or disability. There is no known treatment or cure for PML. Tell your doctor right away if you notice these symptoms:
    • Confusion
    • Dizziness
    • Difficulty in walking or talking
    • Decreased strength or feeling of weakness on one side of your body
    • Vision problems or blurred vision
  • Tumor Lysis Syndrome (TLS): It is caused by the fast breakdown of cancer cells. TLS can cause you to have:
    • Kidney failure and the need for dialysis treatment
    • Abnormal heart rhythms can happen within 12 to 24 hours after receiving a dose of RUXIENCE. Your doctor may check if you have TLS by conducting a blood test. Your doctor may give you medicine to help prevent TLS. Your doctor will give you medicine if you have experienced any of the following symptoms of TLS:
    • Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, lack of energy.
  • Serious Infections: Serious infections (they include bacterial, fungal, and viral infections) can also happen during and after treatment with RUXIENCE, and can lead to death. RUXIENCE can increase your risk of getting infections and can weaken the immune system to fight infections. After receiving RUXIENCE, some people have developed low levels of certain antibodies in their blood for a long period of time (longer than 11 months) and these patients have developed infections. Go to your doctor right away if you experience the following symptoms of infection:
    • Fever
    • Cold symptoms, (such as runny nose or sore throat) that do not go away
    • Flu symptoms
    • Earache, headache, pain during urination
    • Cold sores in the mouth or throat, scrapes, cuts, or incisions that are red, warm, swollen, or painful
  • Heart Problems: RUXIENCE can cause heart problems (like chest pain, irregular heartbeats, and heart attack). Go to your doctor right away if you experience chest pain or irregular heartbeats during treatment with RUXIENCE.
  • Kidney Problems: especially if you are receiving RUXIENCE for non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (NHL). RUXIENCE can cause severe kidney problems that lead to death. Your doctor should do blood tests to check if your kidneys are working well.
  • Stomach and Serious Bowel Problems That Can Sometimes Lead to Death: Bowel problems such as blockage or tears in the bowel can happen if you receive RUXIENCE with chemotherapy medicines. Go to your doctor right away if you have any abdominal pain or repeated vomiting during treatment with RUXIENCE.

Drug Interactions

Renal toxicity when used in combination with cisplatin.

How to store RUXIENCE?

Store RUXIENCE vials refrigerated at 2°C to 8°C. The RITUXAN vials should be protected from direct sunlight. Do not freeze or shake.

What are the ingredients in RUXIENCE?

Active ingredient: rituximab-pvvr
Inactive ingredients: L-histidine, edetate disodium dihydrate, L-histidine hydrochloride monohydrate, polysorbate 80, sucrose, and Water for Injection, USP.