Trodelvy® (Sacituzumab Govitecan)

Reviewed by: HU Medical Review Board | Last reviewed: April 2023

Trodelvy® (sacituzumab govitecan) is a treatment option for some adults with advanced or metastatic urothelial cancer. Urothelial cancer is the most common type of bladder cancer.1

Trodelvy is intended as an option for people with bladder cancer who have already been treated with certain other medications. Before receiving Trodelvy, a person must have previously been treated with platinum-containing chemotherapy and a certain type of immunotherapy medicine. The cancer also must have started to spread locally (known as advanced cancer) or around the body (known as metastatic cancer).1,2

Trodelvy was granted accelerated approval to treat advanced urothelial cancer by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in April 2021. The FDA may give accelerated approval to new drugs that treat a health condition with few or no other treatments. This means drugs like Trodelvy can become available sooner. However, they typically require ongoing studies to confirm the benefits of the drug.1

What are the ingredients in Trodelvy?

The active ingredient in Trodelvy is sacituzumab govitecan-hziy.3

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How does Trodelvy work?

Trodelvy is a type of drug called an antibody-drug conjugate (ADC). Trodelvy is slightly different from typical cancer drugs. It has 3 parts that work together to fight cancer:3,4

  • An antibody (sacituzumab)
  • An anti-cancer drug (SN-38)
  • A linker (CL2A)

Scientists think the antibody looks for a specific protein called Trop-2, which can be found on cancer cells. When it finds the protein, the antibody binds to it. Once Trodelvy is bound to a cancer cell, the anti-cancer drug attacks and kills it. The third part of Trodelvy is the linker, which connects the antibody and the anti-cancer drug.4

What are the possible side effects of Trodelvy?

The most common side effects of Trodelvy include:1

  • Diarrhea
  • Low white blood cell counts
  • Low red blood cell counts
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Tiredness
  • Hair loss
  • Constipation
  • Loss of appetite

Trodelvy has a boxed warning, the strictest warning from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). This is because of the risk of severe diarrhea and low white blood cell count. A low white blood cell count can make people more susceptible to infections and potentially be life-threatening.3

Contact your doctor right away if you have signs of infection, including:3

  • Fever
  • Chills
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath
  • Burning or pain when you urinate

During treatment with Trodelvy, your doctors should monitor your white blood cell levels. If they drop too low or if you show signs of infection, they may pause or reduce your dose.3

These are not all the possible side effects of Trodelvy. Talk to your doctor about what to expect when taking Trodelvy. You also should call your doctor if you have any changes that concern you when taking Trodelvy.

Things to know about Trodelvy

Before starting Trodelvy, tell your doctor if you have liver problems. Also tell your doctor if you have been told you carry a gene for uridine diphosphate-glucuronosyl transferase 1A1 (UGT1A1)*28. This may increase your risk of side effects from Trodelvy.3

Trodelvy can harm an unborn baby. People who can become pregnant and men with partners who can become pregnant should use birth control during treatment and for some time after the last dose of Trodelvy. Women should also not breastfeed during treatment with Trodelvy and for some time after the last dose. Talk to your doctor about your options for birth control and breastfeeding while taking Trodelvy.3

Trodelvy may interact with other medicines. Before beginning treatment for bladder cancer, tell your doctor about all your health conditions and any other drugs, vitamins, or supplements you are taking. This includes over-the-counter drugs.3

For more information, read the full prescribing information of Trodelvy.