ViiV Healthcare receives EU Marketing Authorisation for Dovato (dolutegravir/lamivudine), a new once-daily, single-pill, two-drug regimen for the treatment of HIV-1 infection
Authorisation based on GEMINI pivotal trials in which Dovato achieved non-inferior efficacy compared to a dolutegravir-based, three-drug regimen through 48 weeks, with no cases of resistance.
Issued: London, UK – LSE announcement
ViiV Healthcare, the global specialist HIV company, majority owned by GlaxoSmithKline, with Pfizer Inc. and Shionogi Limited as shareholders, today announced that the European Commission has granted Marketing Authorisation for Dovato (dolutegravir/lamivudine) for the treatment of HIV-1 infection in adults and adolescents above 12 years of age weighing at least 40 kg, with no known or suspected resistance to the integrase inhibitor class, or lamivudine.
Deborah Waterhouse, CEO, ViiV Healthcare, said: “For many years, the standard of care for treatment-naïve people living with HIV in Europe has been a three-drug regimen. The data from our dolutegravir-based two-drug regimen development programme challenges this, and with the authorisation of Dovato, people living with HIV can for the first time start treatment on a once-daily, single-pill, two-drug regimen with the knowledge that efficacy is non-inferior to a three-drug regimen whilst containing fewer antiretrovirals. Dovato strengthens ViiV Healthcare’s industry-leading portfolio of innovative treatment approaches for people living with HIV.”
With around 25,000 new HIV diagnoses in Europe[*] every year, and the fact that today HIV is considered a chronic condition which requires people living with HIV (PLHIV) to remain on antiretroviral (ARV) treatment for life, it is ever more important to provide innovative treatment options.
Marketing Authorisation for Dovato is supported by data from the landmark global GEMINI 1 and 2 studies that included more than 1,400 HIV-1 infected adults. In these studies, dolutegravir and lamivudine demonstrated non-inferior efficacy based on plasma HIV-1 RNA <50 copies per millilitre (c/mL), a standard measure of HIV control, at week 48 when compared to a three-drug regimen of dolutegravir and two nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NRTIs), tenofovir disoproxil fumarate/emtricitabine (TDF/FTC), in treatment-naïve, HIV-1 infected adults. The safety results for dolutegravir and lamivudine seen in GEMINI 1 and 2 were consistent with the product labelling for dolutegravir and lamivudine. Four patients (1%) in both the dolutegravir and lamivudine, and the dolutegravir and TDF/FTC, study arms experienced drug-related serious adverse events, and 15 patients (2%) in the dolutegravir and lamivudine arm and 16 patients (2%) in the dolutegravir and TDF/FTC arm had adverse events that led to discontinuation. The most common adverse reactions included headache, diarrhoea, nausea, insomnia, and fatigue. No patient who experienced virologic failure in either treatment arm developed treatment-emergent resistance also up to week 48., 
John C. Pottage, Jr, M.D. Chief Scientific and Medical Officer, ViiV Healthcare said: “The Marketing Authorisation of Dovato in Europe marks a significant development for people living with HIV. This treatment allows individuals to take a two-drug regimen in a single pill with dolutegravir at the core, building on the established potency and safety profiles of dolutegravir and lamivudine. ViiV Healthcare’s ambition and innovative R&D programme aims to reduce the number of HIV drugs people living with HIV take over a lifetime and Dovato is an important addition to our portfolio of medicines to support this aim.”
Dovato (dolutegravir 50 mg/ lamivudine 300 mg tablets) was authorised by the US Food and Drug Administration in April 2019 (please see US Prescribing Information including Box Warning), and further regulatory applications have been submitted worldwide.
About Dovato (dolutegravir/lamivudine)
Dovato (dolutegravir 50 mg/ lamivudine 300 mg tablets) is authorised in the EU for the treatment of HIV-1 infection in adults and adolescents above 12 years of age weighing at least 40 kg, with no known or suspected resistance to the integrase inhibitor class, or lamivudine. Dolutegravir/lamivudine is a once-daily, single-pill, two-drug regimen that combines the integrase strand transfer inhibitor (INSTI) dolutegravir (Tivicay, 50 mg) with the nucleoside analogue reverse transcriptase inhibitor (NRTI) lamivudine (Epivir, 300 mg).
In the US the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) authorised Dovato, a complete, once-daily, single-tablet regimen of dolutegravir (DTG) 50 mg and lamivudine (3TC) 300 mg for the treatment of HIV-1 infection in adults with no antiretroviral (ARV) treatment history and with no known resistance to either DTG or 3TC.
Like a dolutegravir-based three-drug regimen, Dolutegravir/lamivudine uses two drugs to inhibit the viral cycle at two different sites. INSTIs, like dolutegravir, inhibit HIV replication by preventing the viral DNA from integrating into the genetic material of human immune cells (T-cells). This step is essential in the HIV replication cycle and is also responsible for establishing chronic infection. Lamivudine is an NRTI that works by interfering with the conversion of viral ribonucleic acid (RNA) into deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) which in turn stops the virus from multiplying.
Trademarks are owned by or licensed to the ViiV Healthcare group of companies.
Important Safety Information for Dovato (50mg dolutegravir/300mg lamivudine) tablets in the EU
The following Important Safety Information is based on the Summary of Product Characteristics for Dovato. Please consult the full Summary of Product Characteristics for all the safety information.
Dovato (50mg dolutegravir/300mg lamivudine)
Dovato is indicated for the treatment of Human Immunodeficiency Virus type 1 (HIV-1) infection in adults and adolescents above 12 years of age weighing at least 40 kg, with no known or suspected resistance to the integrase inhibitor class, or lamivudine.
The recommended dose of Dovato in adults and adolescents is one 50 mg/300 mg tablet once daily.
Method of administration
Oral use. Dovato can be taken with or without food.
Hypersensitivity to the active substances or to any of the excipients listed in section 6.1.
A separate preparation of dolutegravir is available where a dose adjustment is indicated due to drug-drug interactions (e.g. rifampicin, carbamazepine, oxcarbazepine, phenytoin, phenobarbital, St. John’s wort, etravirine (without boosted protease inhibitors), efavirenz, nevirapine, or tipranavir/ritonavir. In these cases the physician should refer to the individual product information for dolutegravir.
If the patient misses a dose of Dovato, the patient should take Dovato as soon as possible, providing the next dose is not due within 4 hours. If the next dose is due within 4 hours, the patient should not take the missed dose and simply resume the usual dosing schedule.
Special warnings and precautions for use
Transmission of HIV
While effective viral suppression with antiretroviral therapy has been proven to substantially reduce the risk of sexual transmission, a residual risk cannot be excluded. Precautions to prevent transmission should be taken in accordance with national guidelines.
Hypersensitivity reactions have been reported with dolutegravir, and were characterized by rash, constitutional findings, and sometimes, organ dysfunction, including severe liver reactions. Dovato and other suspect medicinal products should be discontinued immediately if signs or symptoms of hypersensitivity reactions develop (including, but not limited to, severe rash or rash accompanied by raised liver enzymes, fever, general malaise, fatigue, muscle or joint aches, blisters, oral lesions, conjunctivitis, facial oedema, eosinophilia, angioedema). Clinical status including liver aminotransferases and bilirubin should be monitored. Delay in stopping treatment with Dovato or other suspect active substances after the onset of hypersensitivity may result in a life-threatening allergic reaction.
Weight and metabolic parameters
An increase in weight and in levels of blood lipids and glucose may occur during antiretroviral therapy. Such changes may in part be linked to disease control and life style. For lipids, there is in some cases evidence for a treatment effect, while for weight gain there is no strong evidence relating this to any particular treatment. For monitoring of blood lipids and glucose reference is made to established HIV treatment guidelines. Lipid disorders should be managed as clinically appropriate.
Patients with chronic hepatitis B or C and treated with combination antiretroviral therapy are at an increased risk of severe and potentially fatal hepatic adverse reactions. In case of concomitant antiviral therapy for hepatitis B or C, please refer also to the relevant product information for these medicinal products.
Dovato includes lamivudine, which is active against hepatitis B. Dolutegravir lacks such activity. Lamivudine monotherapy is generally not considered an adequate treatment for hepatitis B, since the risk for hepatitis B resistance development is high. If Dovato is used in patients co-infected with hepatitis B an additional antiviral is therefore generally needed. Reference should be made to treatment guidelines.
If Dovato is discontinued in patients co-infected with hepatitis B virus, periodic monitoring of both liver function tests and markers of HBV replication is recommended, as withdrawal of lamivudine may result in an acute exacerbation of hepatitis.
Patients with pre-existing liver dysfunction, including chronic active hepatitis have an increased frequency of liver function abnormalities during combination antiretroviral therapy, and should be monitored according to standard practice. If there is evidence of worsening liver disease in such patients, interruption or discontinuation of treatment must be considered.
Immune Reactivation Syndrome
In HIV-infected patients with severe immune deficiency at the time of institution of combination antiretroviral therapy (CART), an inflammatory reaction to asymptomatic or residual opportunistic pathogens may arise and cause serious clinical conditions, or aggravation of symptoms. Typically, such reactions have been observed within the first few weeks or months of initiation of CART. Relevant examples are Cytomegalovirus retinitis, generalised and/or focal mycobacterial infections, and Pneumocystis jirovecii pneumonia (often referred to as PCP). Any inflammatory symptoms should be evaluated and treatment instituted when necessary. Autoimmune disorders (such as Graves’ disease and autoimmune hepatitis) have also been reported to occur in the setting of immune reactivation; however, the reported time to onset is more variable and these events can occur many months after initiation of treatment.
Liver chemistry elevations consistent with immune reconstitution syndrome were observed in some hepatitis B and/or C co-infected patients at the start of dolutegravir therapy. Monitoring of liver chemistries is recommended in patients with hepatitis B and/or C co-infection.
Although the aetiology is considered to be multifactorial (including corticosteroid use, biphosphonates, alcohol consumption, severe immunosuppression, higher body mass index), cases of osteonecrosis have been reported in patients with advanced HIV-disease and/or long-term exposure to CART. Patients should be advised to seek medical advice if they experience joint aches and pain, joint stiffness or difficulty in movement.
Patients should be advised that dolutegravir, lamivudine or any other antiretroviral therapy does not cure HIV infection and that they may still develop opportunistic infections and other complications of HIV infection. Therefore, patients should remain under close clinical observation by physicians experienced in the treatment of these associated HIV diseases.
The most frequently reported adverse reactions are headache (3%), diarrhoea (2%), nausea (2%) and insomnia (2%).
The most severe adverse reaction reported with dolutegravir was a hypersensitivity reaction that included rash and severe liver effects.
Tabulated list of adverse reactions is available in the full information leaflet.
Changes in laboratory biochemistries
Dolutegravir has been associated with an increase in serum creatinine occuring in the first week of treatment when administered with other antiretroviral medicinal products. Increases in serum creatinine occurred within the first four weeks of treatment with dolutegravir plus lamivudine and remained stable through 48 weeks. These changes are linked to the inhibiting effect of dolutegravir on renal tubular transporters of creatinine. The changes are not considered to be clinically relevant and do not reflect a change in glomerular filtration rate.
Co-infection with Hepatitis B or C
In the Phase III studies for the dolutegravir single agent, patients with hepatitis B and/or C co-infection were permitted to enrol provided that baseline liver chemistry tests did not exceed 5 times the upper limit of normal (ULN). Overall, the safety profile in patients co-infected with hepatitis B and/or C was similar to that observed in patients without hepatitis B or C co-infection, although the rates of AST and ALT abnormalities were higher in the subgroup with hepatitis B and/or C co-infection for all treatment groups. Liver chemistry elevations consistent with immune reconstitution syndrome were observed in some subjects with hepatitis B and/or C co-infection at the start of dolutegravir therapy, particularly in those whose anti-hepatitis B therapy was withdrawn.
No drug interaction studies have been conducted using Dovato. Dovato contains dolutegravir and lamivudine, therefore any interactions identified for these individually are relevant to Dovato. No clinically significant drug interactions are expected between dolutegravir and lamivudine.
The recommended dose of dolutegravir is 50 mg twice daily when co-administered with rifampicin, carbamazepine, oxcarbazepine, phenytoin, phenobarbital, St. John’s wort, etravirine (without boosted protease inhibitors), efavirenz, nevirapine, or tipranavir/ritonavir.
Dovato should not be co-administered with polyvalent cation-containing antacids. Polyvalent cation-containing antacids are recommended to be taken 2 hours after or 6 hours before Dovato.
When taken with food, Dovato and supplements or multivitamins containing calcium, iron or magnesium can be taken at the same time. If Dovato is administered under fasting conditions, supplements or multivitamins containing calcium, iron or magnesium are recommended to be taken 2 hours after or 6 hours before Dovato.
Dolutegravir increased metformin concentrations. A dose adjustment of metformin should be considered when starting and stopping coadministration of Dovato with metformin, to maintain glycaemic control. Metformin is eliminated renally and, therefore, it is of importance to monitor renal function when co-treated with Dovato. This combination may increase the risk for lactic acidosis in patients with moderate renal impairment (stage 3a creatinine clearance 45– 59 mL/min) and a cautious approach is recommended. Reduction of the metformin dose should be highly considered.
The combination of Dovato with cladribine is not recommended.
Dovato should not be taken with any other medicinal product containing dolutegravir or lamivudine, except where a dose adjustment of dolutegravir is indicated due to drug-drug interactions.
Other established and theoretical interactions with selected antiretrovirals and non-antiretroviral medicinal products are listed in the full information leaflet.
Fertility, pregnancy and lactation
Women of childbearing potential
Women of childbearing potential (WOCBP) should undergo pregnancy testing before initiation of Dovato. WOCBP who are taking Dovato should use effective contraception throughout treatment.
The safety and efficacy of a dual regimen has not been studied in pregnancy. Preliminary data from a surveillance study has suggested an increased incidence of neural tube defects (0.9%) in mothers exposed to dolutegravir (a component of Dovato) at the time of conception compared with mothers exposed to non-dolutegravir containing regimens (0.1%).
The incidence of neural tube defects in the general population ranges from 0.5-1 case per 1,000 live births (0.05-0.1%). As neural tube defects occur within the first 4 weeks of foetal development (at which time the neural tubes are sealed) this potential risk would concern women exposed to dolutegravir at the time of conception and in early pregnancy. Due to the potential risk of neural tube defects with dolutegravir, Dovato should not be used during the first trimester unless there is no alternative.
More than 1000 outcomes from second and third trimester exposure to dolutegravir in pregnant women indicate no evidence of increased risk of malformities and foeto/neonatal negative effects. However, as the mechanism by which dolutegravir may interfere in human pregnancy is unknown, the safety in use during the second and third trimester cannot be confirmed. Dovato should be used during pregnancy only if the expected benefit justifies the potential risk to the foetus.
In animal reproductive toxicology studies with dolutegravir, no adverse development outcomes, including neural tube defects, were identified. Dolutegravir was shown to cross the placenta in animals.
A large amount of data on the use of lamivudine in pregnant women (more than 3000 outcomes from first trimester) indicates no malformative toxicity.
Animal studies showed lamivudine may inhibit cellular DNA replication (see section 5.3). The clinical relevance of these findings is unknown.
Nucleoside and nucleotide analogues have been demonstrated in vitro and in vivo to cause a variable degree of mitochondrial damage. There have been reports of mitochondrial dysfunction in HIV-negative infants exposed in utero and/or post-natally to nucleoside analogues, these have predominantly concerned treatment with regimens containing zidovudine. The main adverse reactions reported are haematological disorders (anaemia, neutropenia), and metabolic disorders (hyperlactatemia, hyperlipasemia). These reactions have often been transitory. These findings do not affect current national recommendations to use antiretroviral therapy in pregnant women to prevent vertical transmission of HIV.
It is unknown whether dolutegravir is excreted in human milk. Available toxicological data in animals has shown excretion of dolutegravir in milk. In lactating rats that received a single oral dose of 50 mg/kg at 10 days postpartum, dolutegravir was detected in milk at concentrations typically higher than blood.
Based on more than 200 mother/child pairs treated for HIV, serum concentrations of lamivudine in breastfed infants of mothers treated for HIV are very low (< 4% of maternal serum concentrations) and progressively decrease to undetectable levels when breastfed infants reach 24 weeks of age. There are no data available on the safety of lamivudine when administered to babies less than three months old.
It is recommended that HIV infected women do not breast-feed their infants under any circumstances in order to avoid transmission of HIV.
There are no data on the effects of dolutegravir or lamivudine on human male or female fertility. Animal studies indicate no effects of dolutegravir or lamivudine on male or female fertility.
Effects on ability to drive and use machines
Dovato has no or negligible influence on the ability to drive and use machines. Patients should be informed that dizziness and somnolence has been reported during treatment with dolutegravir. The clinical status of the patient and the adverse reaction profile of Dovato should be borne in mind when considering the patient’s ability to drive or operate machinery.
Please refer to the full European Summary of Product Characteristics for Dolutegravir/lamivudine
for full prescribing information, including contraindications, special warnings and precautions for use. For the US, please refer to the US Prescribing Information.
About ViiV Healthcare
ViiV Healthcare is a global specialist HIV company established in November 2009 by GlaxoSmithKline (LSE: GSK) and Pfizer (NYSE: PFE) dedicated to delivering advances in treatment and care for people living with HIV and for people who are at risk of becoming infected with HIV. Shionogi joined in October 2012. The company’s aims to take a deeper and broader interest in HIV/AIDS than any company has done before and take a new approach to deliver effective and innovative medicines for HIV treatment and prevention, as well as support communities affected by HIV.
For more information on the company, its management, portfolio, pipeline, and commitment, please visit www.viivhealthcare.com.
GSK is a science-led global healthcare company with a special purpose: to help people do more, feel better, live longer. For further information please visit www.gsk.com/about-us.
[*] The European Union/European Economic Area
 Dovato EU Summary of Product Characteristics.
 European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control, and World Health Organization. HIV/AIDS Surveillance in Europe. 2018. 2017 data. Available at https://ecdc.europa.eu/sites/portal/files/documents/hiv-aids-surveillance-europe-2018.pdf. Last accessed June 2019.
 Cahn J, Sierra Madero J, Arribas J, et al. Non-inferior efficacy of dolutegravir (DTG) plus lamivudine (3TC) versus DTG plus tenofovir/emtricitabine (TDF/FTC) fixed-dose combination in antiretroviral treatment-naïve adults with HIV-1 infection – 48-week results from the GEMINI studies. AIDS 2018.
 Cahn P, Sierra Madero J, Arribas JR, et al. Dolutegravir plus lamivudine versus dolutegravir plus tenofovir disoproxil fumarate and emtricitabine in antiretroviral-naïve adults with HIV-1 infection (GEMINI-1 and GEMINI-2): week 48 results from two multicentre, double-blind, randomised, non-inferiority, phase 3 trials. Lancet. 2019;393(10167):143-155
 Dovato US Prescribing Information https://www.gsksource.com/pharma/content/dam/GlaxoSmithKline/US/en/Prescribing_Information/Dovato/pdf/DOVATO-PI-PIL.PDF. Last accessed June 2019.
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