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Immunotherapy exhibits antileukemic activity in high-risk patients

HT Staff Read Article
Published: 03/31/17

B-cell precursor ALL
Image by Vashi Donsk

Blinatumomab has demonstrated activity in high-risk patients with Philadelphia chromosome-positive (Ph+) B-cell precursor acute lymphoblastic leukemia (BCP-ALL), according to research published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology. This phase 2 trial enrolled patients with relapsed or refractory Ph+ BCP-ALL who had failed treatment with at least 1 tyrosine kinase inhibitor (TKI). Blinatumomab produced a complete response (CR) in 31% of these patients . . . [Read Article]

FDA grants priority review to sBLA for blinatumomab

HT Staff Read Article
Published: 03/30/17

Vials of blinatumomab powder
and solution for infusion
Photo courtesy of Amgen

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has accepted for priority review the supplemental biologics license application (sBLA) for blinatumomab (Blincyto®). The aim of this application is to expand the indication for blinatumomab to include all patients with relapsed or refractory B-cell precursor acute lymphoblastic leukemia (BCP-ALL) and to convert blinatumomab’s current accelerated approval to a full approval. [Read Article]

Single dose of ZA pre-transplant prevents bone loss

Erilyn Riley Read Article
Published: 03/02/17

Bone density scanner
Photo by Steven Fruitsmaak

A single, 4 mg-dose of the bisphosphonate zoledronic acid (ZA) prior to allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplant (HSCT) prevents femoral neck (FN) bone loss at day 100 in patients with lymphoid or myeloid malignancies, according to new research. And patients who receive risk-adapted ZA therapy after transplant can significantly reduce bone loss between days 100 and 365. However, patients with acute and chronic graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) continue to be at risk of bone loss. [Read Article]

Acquired mutations may compromise assay

HT Staff Read Article
Published: 02/28/17

Kevin Watanabe-Smith, PhD
Photo courtesy of Oregon
Health & Science University/
Kristyna Wentz-Graff

A newly discovered issue with the Ba/F3 transformation assay could “jeopardize attempts to characterize the signaling mechanisms and drug sensitivities of leukemic oncogenes,” researchers reported in Oncotarget. The researchers said the assay “remains an invaluable tool” for validating activating mutations in primary leukemias. However, the assay is prone to a previously unreported flaw, where Ba/F3 cells can acquire additional mutations. [Read Article]

Inpatient palliative care improves QOL for HSCT patients

Erilyn Riley Read Article
Published: 02/27/17

Doctor and hospitalized patient
Photo courtesy of CDC

New research shows that patients who received inpatient palliative care while undergoing hematopoietic stem cell transplant (HSCT) experienced significant improvements in quality of life (QOL), decreases in depression, and reductions in symptom burden compared to patients who received transplant care alone. Areej R. El-Jawahri, MD, of Harvard Medical School in Boston, Massachusetts, presented these results at the 2017 BMT Tandem Meetings. [Read Article]



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