Generic Name: lurbinectedin
Drug Class: Chemotherapy Medications
Approval Status: Approved
Generic Version Available: No
Experimental Code: PM1183
Zepzelca is an alkylating drug approved for the treatment of metastatic small-cell lung cancer that has progressed during or after platinum-based chemotherapy.
Zepzelca is an alkylating agent that binds to DNA and interferes with transcription factors that play a role in cancer cell growth. It also inhibits the activity of certain immune cells and the production of cytokines that spur tumor growth.
In a Phase II trial, just over a third of participants treated with Zepzelca experienced partial tumor shrinkage, for an overall response rate of 35%. Zepzelca was first approved in June 2020.
Zepzelca is administered as an IV infusion once every 21 days.
Common adverse reactions include fatigue, nausea, vomiting, decreased appetite, diarrhea, constipation, muscle or joint pain, cough and shortness of breath. The most common laboratory abnormalities include increased ALT and AST liver enzymes, increased creatinine and elevated blood glucose. Zepzelca can cause depletion of red blood cells, white blood cells and platelets, which can lead to fatigue, increased susceptibility to infections and easy bleeding. It can cause fetal harm if used during pregnancy.
Last Reviewed: June 15, 2020