Astellas has announced the launch of its drug Cresemba (isavuconazonium sulfate) for the treatment of adult patients with invasive aspergillosis and invasive mucormycosis, both life-threatening fungal infections that predominantly occur in immunocompromised patients.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved Cresemba for these indications early last month.

“The launch of Cresemba in the U.S. marks the availability of an important new treatment option for patients and healthcare professionals fighting these life-threatening fungal infections,” said Bernie Zeiher, M.D., divisional president and head of Global Development at Astellas.

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“Given the high morbidity and mortality rates associated with invasive aspergillosis and invasive mucormycosis, we are excited to provide physicians and patients with this alternative therapy in an area of significant unmet medical need.”

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Health care providers should be aware that is it contraindicated to coadminister Cresemba with strong CYP3A4 inhibitors, such as ketoconazole and high-dose ritonavir, or strong CYP3A4 inducers like rifampin, carbamazepine, and long-acting barbiturates due to drug-drug interactions.

The most common adverse events associated with Cresemba treatment are nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, elevated liver function tests, hypokalemia, constipation, dyspnea, cough, peripheral edema, and back pain.

Isavuconazonium sulfate is the prodrug for isavuconazole.