EHA 2015

 
 
 

The 20th Congress of the European Hematology Association took place June 11 - 14, 2015, in Vienna, Austria.

 

HSCT outcomes ‘encouraging’ in JAKi responders

Erilyn Riley Read Article
Published: 07/02/15

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HSCT preparation
Photo by Chad McNeeley

Outcomes of hematopoietic stem cell transplant (HSCT) are encouraging in myelofibrosis (MF) patients who respond well to JAK inhibitors, according to researchers. The group found that patients with the best response to JAK inhibition had a 2-year survival probability of 91% after HSCT, compared to 32% for patients with leukemic transformation while on a JAK inhibitor. In addition, receiving a JAK inhibitor until HSCT could prevent the return of MF-related symptoms. [Read Article]

PI3Kδ/γ inhibitor generates rapid responses in CLL

Erilyn Riley Read Article
Published: 07/02/15

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Micrograph showing CLL

New research indicates that duvelisib, a dual inhibitor of PI3Kδ and PI3Kγ, can generate rapid partial responses in treatment-naïve patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL). The 18 patients in the expansion cohort of a phase 1 study of duvelisib had a median time to response of 3.7 months, according to iwCLL response criteria. And 47% of the responses occurred by the first assessment on day 1 of cycle 3. [Read Article]

Agent reduces fibrosis, improves platelet counts in MF

HT Staff Read Article
Published: 06/26/15

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Messe Wien, site of EHA 2015

The immunotherapeutic agent PRM-151, when given alone or in combination with ruxolitinib, can reduce bone marrow fibrosis and improve platelet counts in patients with myelofibrosis (MF), results of a phase 2 trial suggest. Using a novel assessment technique known as computer-assisted image analysis (CIA), researchers found that PRM-151, with or without ruxolitinib, prompted fibrosis responses in nearly three-quarters of patients studied. [Read Article]

Combo shows promise for heavily pretreated MM

HT Staff Read Article
Published: 06/23/15

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Angiogenesis
Image by Louis Heiser
and Robert Ackland

Combining a novel agent with dexamethasone can produce successful results where other treatments have failed, according to a presentation at the 20th Congress of the European Hematology Association. Researchers tested low-dose dexamethasone in combination with melflufen, a peptidase-targeted therapy and antiangiogenic compound, in a phase 1/2 study of patients with relapsed or relapsed-refractory multiple myeloma (MM).  [Read Article]

Activin receptors continue to show efficacy in ß-thalassemia

Erilyn Riley Read Article
Published: 06/22/15

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Attendees at the 20th
Congress of the European
Hematology Association

Two very similar activin receptors, luspatercept and sotatercept, continue to show efficacy in patients with ß-thalassemia, according to research presented at the 20th Congress of the European Hematology Association. The “twin compounds” basically differ from each other in the receptor type, but both can increase hemoglobin levels in non-transfusion-dependent (NTD) patients and reduce transfusion burden in transfusion-dependent (TD) patients. [Read Article]

Drug won’t advance to phase 3 in ß-thalassemia

Erilyn Riley Read Article
Published: 06/22/15

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Blood smear showing
thalassemia

Data from a phase 2a trial suggest the activin receptor sotatercept can effectively treat patients with ß-thalassemia. However, the companies developing the drug have decided not to advance sotatercept to phase 3 trials in this patient population. Instead, the companies are initiating a phase 3 program with sotatercept’s “twin” activin receptor, luspatercept, in patients with ß-thalassemia or myelodysplastic syndromes. [Read Article]

Jury still out on combo for elderly AML

HT Staff Read Article
Published: 06/20/15

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Doctor and patient
Photo courtesy of NIH

A 2-drug combination can produce complete responses (CRs) in elderly patients with newly diagnosed acute myeloid leukemia (AML), but whether the treatment confers a survival benefit remains to be seen. The combination consists of the HDAC inhibitor pracinostat and the antineoplastic agent azacitidine. In a phase 2 study, the treatment produced CRs in nearly a third of AML patients, and follow-up has shown that responses improve over time. [Read Article]

Unsickling red blood cells

Erilyn Riley Read Article
Published: 06/19/15

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Messe Wien, site of EHA 2015

Researchers say they have found a way to unsickle red blood cells (RBCs), at least in vitro. Using pegylated carboxyhemoglobin bovine gas transfer, the team restored sickled RBCs to a more normal, rounder shape in as little as 5 minutes. Ronald Jubin, PhD, of Prolong Pharmaceuticals, the company developing carboxyhemoglobin, described this process at the 20th Congress of the European Hematology Association. [Read Article]

Triplet can provide clinical benefit in rel/ref MM

HT Staff Read Article
Published: 06/19/15

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Micrograph showing MM

Combination therapy consisting of the HDAC6 inhibitor ricolinostat, pomalidomide, and dexamethasone can provide a clinical benefit for patients with relapsed and refractory multiple myeloma (MM), according to a researchers. In a phase 1b/2 trial, the triplet produced an overall response rate (ORR) of 29% and a clinical benefit rate of 50%. The most common treatment-related adverse events were fatigue, diarrhea, and neutropenia.  [Read Article]

Combo delays progression in relapsed CLL

HT Staff Read Article
Published: 06/19/15

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Micrograph showing CLL

Results of the COMPLEMENT 2 trial indicate that adding ofatumumab to treatment with fludarabine and cyclophosphamide (OFC) can improve some outcome measures in patients with relapsed chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL), when compared to fludarabine and cyclophosphamide alone (FC). Patients who received OFC had a significantly higher overall response rate and longer median progression-free survival than patients who received FC. [Read Article]

Dose reductions make ponatinib safer for CP-CML

HT Staff Read Article
Published: 06/18/15

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Jorge Cortes, MD

Administering ponatinib at lower doses can reduce the risk of arterial occlusive events (AOE) without hindering responses in patients with chronic-phase chronic myeloid leukemia (CP-CML), data from the PACE trial suggest. When earlier results of this phase 2 study showed that ponatinib can cause AOEs, trials of the drug were put on partial clinical hold. Enrollment was stalled temporarily, and investigators began reducing ponatinib doses. [Read Article]

JAK inhibitor can provide long-term disease control in PV

HT Staff Read Article
Published: 06/18/15

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Blood smear showing PV
Image courtesy of AFIP

Updated results from the phase 3 RESPONSE trial suggest the JAK1/2 inhibitor ruxolitinib can provide long-term disease control in patients with polycythemia vera (PV) who are resistant to or intolerant of hydroxyurea. At 18 months of follow-up, 80% of patients had achieved a durable response to ruxolitinib, sustaining hematocrit levels below 45% without the use of phlebotomy and experiencing reductions in spleen size. [Read Article]

mAb produces responses in AL amyloidosis

HT Staff Read Article
Published: 06/18/15

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Cardiac amyloidosis

A monoclonal antibody (mAb) can produce responses in patients with light chain (AL) amyloidosis and persistent organ dysfunction, according to research presented at the 20th Congress of the European Hematology Association. In an ongoing phase 1/2 trial, the mAb, known as NEOD001, produced a cardiac response in 57% of evaluable patients and a renal response in 60% of evaluable patients. [Read Article]

Drug may be ‘important treatment option’ for AML

HT Staff Read Article
Published: 06/18/15

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Farhad Ravandi, MD
Photo courtesy of ASH

Adding the anticancer quinolone derivative vosaroxin to treatment with cytarabine can improve outcomes for some older patients with relapsed/refractory acute myeloid leukemia (AML), results of the phase 3 VALOR trial suggest. AML patients age 60 and older with refractory and early relapse disease had improved survival rates when they received vosaroxin and cytarabine, compared to patients who received cytarabine and placebo. [Read Article]

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