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Is Nplate a chemotherapy drug?

Medically reviewed by Leigh Ann Anderson, PharmD. Last updated on Aug 7, 2023.

Official answer


No, Nplate is not a chemotherapy (cancer) drug. Nplate is a prescription medicine used to treat low platelet counts that can lead to bleeding in people with chronic immune thrombocytopenic purpura (ITP). Platelets are blood cells that help to form a blood clot.

Nplate (romiplostim) is approved for use in adults and children 1 years of age older.

  • In adults, Nplate is used when certain medicines or surgery to remove the spleen have not worked well enough.
  • It is also used in children 1 years or older who have had ITP for at 6 months, but have not had success with surgery to remove the spleen or with certain medications.
  • Nplate is also used to increase survival in people, including newborns, who have been exposed to high levels of radiation (acute radiation syndrome).

Nplate is not used to treat cancer but it may worsen a precancerous condition called myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS). This may further lead to a blood cancer known as acute leukemia. Nplate should not be used in people with MDS or low platelet counts due to any condition other than immune thrombocytopenia (ITP).

Nplate is given once per week as an injection under the skin (subcutaneous) by your healthcare provider.

Related: Nplate Dosing and Side Effects

What is the mechanism of Nplate in ITP?

People with immune thrombocytopenic purpura (ITP) do not make enough of a protein called thrombopoietin (TPO). Nplate works similar to TPO and tells your bone marrow to make more platelets to help reduce the risk of bleeding. Nplate attaches to and activates the TPO receptor, similar to the way your natural TPO works.

This is not all the information you need to know about Nplate (romiplostim) for safe and effective use and does not take the place of talking to your doctor about your treatment. Review the full Nplate information here, and discuss this information and any questions you have with your doctor or other health care provider.


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