Nemtabrutinib is an orally bioavailable, reversible inhibitor of Bruton tyrosine kinase (BTK) and C481S mutant BTK. We evaluated the safety, pharmacology, and antitumor activity of nemtabrutinib in relapsed/refractory hematologic malignancies. Forty-eight patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL), B-cell non–Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL), or Waldenström macroglobulinemia (WM), relapsed/refractory after ≥2 prior therapies were enrolled in the open-label, single-arm, phase I MK-1026-001 study (NCT03162536) to receive nemtabrutinib 5 to 75 mg once daily in 28-day cycles. Dose finding progressed using a 3 + 3 dose escalation design. Primary endpoints were safety and the recommended phase II dose (RP2D). Among 47 treated patients, 29 had CLL, 17 had NHL, and 1 had WM. Grade ≥3 treatment-emergent adverse events occurred in 37 (89%), most commonly neutropenia (11; 23.4%), febrile neutropenia (7; 14.9%), and pneumonia (7; 14.9%). The RP2D was 65 mg daily. An overall response rate of 75% was observed in patients with CLL at 65 mg daily.


This first-in-human phase I study demonstrates the safety and preliminary efficacy of nemtabrutinib in patients with relapsed/refractory B-cell malignancies. These data support further exploration of nemtabrutinib in larger clinical studies.

This article is featured in Selected Articles from This Issue, p. 5

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