• Generic Name: agalsidase beta
  • Brand Name: Fabrazyme
Last updated on MDtodate: 10/04/2022


The following clinically significant adverse reactions are described elsewhere in labeling:

  • Anaphylaxis and Hypersensitivity Reactions.
  • Infusion-Associated Reactions.

Clinical Trials Experience

Because clinical trials are conducted under widely varying conditions, adverse reaction rates observed in clinical trials of a drug cannot be directly compared to rates in the clinical trial of another drug and may not reflect the rates observed in patients in clinical practice.

The data described below reflect exposure of 80 patients, ages 16 to 61 years, to 1 mg/kg Fabrazyme every two weeks in two separate double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trials, for periods ranging from 1 to 35 months (mean 15.5 months). All 58 patients enrolled in one of the two studies continued into an open-label extension study of Fabrazyme treatment for up to 54 additional months. Patients were treated with antipyretics and antihistamines prior to the infusions.

Most Common Adverse Reactions

Table 1 enumerates adverse reactions that occurred during the double-blind treatment periods of the two placebo-controlled trials (Study 1 and Study 2). The most common adverse reactions reported with Fabrazyme were infusion-associated reactions, (Fabrazyme 59% vs placebo 27%) some of which were severe (Fabrazyme 5.0% vs placebo 1.7%). Infusion-associated reactions are defined as adverse reactions occurring on the same day as the infusion.

Common adverse reactions which occurred in ≥20% of patients treated with Fabrazyme and >2.5% compared to placebo are: upper respiratory tract infection, chills, pyrexia, headache, cough, paresthesia, fatigue, peripheral edema, dizziness and rash. Table 1 lists the common adverse reactions (≥ 5%):

Table 1: Summary of Common Adverse Reactions* in Clinical Trials (Study 1 and 2) of Patients with Fabry Disease

Adverse Reaction Fabrazyme
(n=80) %
(n=60) %
Upper respiratory tract infectiona 53 42
Chillsb 49 13
Pyrexia 39 22
Headache 39 28
Cough 33 25
Paresthesia 31 18
Fatigue 24 17
Peripheral edema 21 7
Dizziness 21 8
Rash 20 10
Pain in extremity 19 8
Myalgiac 18 7
Lower respiratory tract infection 18 7
Pain 16 13
Back pain 16 10
Hypertension 14 5
Pruritus 10 3
Tachycardia 9 3
Excoriation 9 2
Increased blood creatinine 9 5
Tinnitus 8 3
Dyspnea 8 2
Fall 6 3
Burning sensation 6 0
Anxiety 6 3
Depression 6 2
Wheezing 6 0
Hypoacusis 5 0
Chest discomfort 5 2
Fungal infection 5 0
Viral infection 5 0
Hot flush 5 0
* Reported at rate of at least 5% in Fabrazyme-treated patients and greater than 2.5% compared to placebo-treated patients.
a Includes reports of upper respiratory infection, nasal congestion, sinusitis, respiratory tract congestion, and pharyngitis.
b Includes reports of chills and feeling cold.
c Includes reports of myalgia and muscle spasms.


Most infusion-associated reactions requiring intervention were ameliorated with slowing of the infusion rate, temporarily stopping the infusion, and/or administration of antipyretics, antihistamines, or steroids.

Adverse Reactions In Pediatric Patients

In Study 3, the safety profile of Fabrazyme in pediatric Fabry disease patients, ages 8 to 16 years, was similar to that seen in adults. The most common adverse reactions (>20%) were headache, abdominal pain, pharyngitis, fever, nausea, vomiting, rhinitis, diarrhea, arthralgia, and dizziness.


As with all therapeutic proteins, there is potential for immunogenicity. The detection of antibody formation is highly dependent on the sensitivity and specificity of the assay. Additionally, the observed incidence of antibody (including neutralizing antibody) positivity in an assay may be influenced by several factors including assay methodology, sample handling, timing of sample collection, concomitant medications, and underlying disease. For these reasons, comparison of the incidence of antibodies to Fabrazyme in the studies described below with the incidence of antibodies in other studies or to other agalsidase beta products may be misleading.

Patients with classic Fabry disease in Study 1, Study 2, and extension studies were tested at multiple time points for antibodies to agalsidase beta during the 55 to 58-month period. Approximately 83% (110 of 133) of adult patients receiving agalsidase beta developed antibodies; 77% (102/133) of patients developed neutralizing antibody (NAb) that inhibited in vitro agalsidase beta catalytic activity, which declined over time, and 6% (8/133) of patients developed NAb that inhibited cellular uptake. In pediatric patients with Fabry disease in Study 3 receiving the recommended dose who were 8 to <16 years of age, antibodies to agalsidase beta were detected in approximately 69% (11/16) of patients. Most patients who developed antibodies did so within the first 3 months of treatment. Antibody titers generally declined over time. Approximately 18% of adult patients who developed antibodies became antibody-negative by 74 weeks (median time) from the time of seroconversion; however, none of the pediatric patients became antibody negative. Female patients generally had lower incidence of antibodies and lower antibody titers compared to male patients. In Study 5, patients with truncating GLA mutations had higher incidence of antibodies and higher antibody titers compared to patients with nontruncating GLA mutations. Patients with plasma α-galactosidase A activity ≤1.5 nmol/hr/mL had higher incidence of antibodies and higher antibody titers compared to patients with plasma α-galactosidase A activity >1.5 nmol/hr/mL.

In general, over 90% of adult and pediatric patients treated with agalsidase beta achieved and maintained normalization of plasma globotriaosylceramide (GL-3) levels irrespective of developing antibodies to agalsidase beta.

Study 4 was an open-label, rechallenge study to evaluate the safety of Fabrazyme treatment in patients who had a positive skin test to Fabrazyme or who had tested positive for Fabrazymespecific IgE antibodies. In this study, six adult male patients, who had experienced multiple or recurrent infusion-associated reactions during previous clinical trials of Fabrazyme, were rechallenged with Fabrazyme administered as a graded infusion for up to 52 weeks of treatment. The initial two rechallenge doses of Fabrazyme were administered as a 0.5 mg/kg dose per week at an initial infusion rate of 0.01 mg/min for the first 30 minutes (1/25th the usually recommended maximum infusion rate). The infusion rate was doubled every 30 minutes thereafter, as tolerated, for the remainder of the infusion up to a maximum rate of 0.25 mg/min. If the patient tolerated the infusion, the dose was increased to 1 mg/kg every two weeks, and the infusion rate was increased by slow upwards titration. Pretreatment was not permitted for at least the first 4 infusions in order to allow early recognition of acute systemic hypersensitivity reactions. Four of the six patients treated in this study received at least 26 weeks of Fabrazyme (2 patients received 26 weeks and 2 patients received 52 weeks), and two patients discontinued prematurely due to recurrent infusion-associated reactions.

Testing for IgE antibodies was performed in approximately 60 patients in clinical trials who experienced moderate to severe infusion-associated reactions or in whom mast cell activation was suspected. Seven of these patients tested positive for Fabrazyme-specific IgE antibodies or had a positive skin test to Fabrazyme. Patients who have had a positive skin test to Fabrazyme, or who have tested positive for Fabrazyme-specific IgE antibodies in clinical trials with Fabrazyme have been rechallenged.

The incidences of hypersensitivity reactions were 51% (41/80) and 60% (25/42) in adult patients with persistent anti-Fabrazyme antibodies and in adult patients with high antibody titer, respectively, compared to 30% (7/23) in antibody-negative adult patients.

The incidence of infusion-associated reactions was 76% (84/110) in antibody positive adult patients compared to 30% (7/23) in antibody negative adult patients. The incidence of infusionassociated reactions was 46% (5/11) in antibody positive pediatric patients compared to 20% (1/5) in antibody negative pediatric patients.

Postmarketing Experience

The following adverse reactions have been identified during postapproval use of Fabrazyme. Because these reactions are reported voluntarily from a population of uncertain size, it is not always possible to reliably estimate their frequency or establish a causal relationship to drug exposure.

Cardiovascular: cardiorespiratory arrest, cardiac failure, myocardial infarction, palpitations

Hypersensitivity reactions: anaphylaxis, localized angioedema (including auricular swelling, eye swelling, dysphagia, lip swelling, edema, pharyngeal edema, face swelling, and swollen tongue), and bronchospasm

General: hyperhidrosis, asthenia, infusion site reaction

Lymphatic: lymphadenopathy

Musculoskeletal: arthralgia

Neurologic: cerebrovascular accident, hypoesthesia, oral hypoesthesia

Pulmonary: respiratory failure, hypoxia

Renal: renal failure

Vascular: leukocytoclastic vasculitis