Revlimid proves effective for bone marrow cancer
According to new findings from the Rush University Medical Center, “unprecedented” survival formultiple myeloma patients was seen with an oral drug, Revlimid.
Multiple Myeloma is a form of blood cancer that happens in the blood making cells of bone marrow.
It was revealed in the findings that patients treated with the oral drug, Revlimid, had a median survival of approximately three years, which is regarded as the longest median survival for bone marrow cancer patients.
Revlimid is an immunomodulatory agent, a drug that can modify or regulate the functioning of the immune system. It is the newest of what are called the novel therapies that have changed the outlook for myeloma patients. It is an oral drug that can be taken at home, and because it targets the cancer cells directly along with factors that support their growth, it does not have the difficult side effects associated with most chemotherapy.
“We are pleased that aggressive efforts to find effective treatments in what was considered a rare, little-known cancer, have led to drugs with broad implications for understanding, treating and eventually curing so many forms of the disease,” said Susie Novis, president and co-founder of the International Myeloma Foundation. “Myeloma has been a difficult disease to cure, but with novel therapies we are developing effective, long-term treatments by using multiple drugs in sequence and in various combinations. The addition of a drug with the potency of Revlimid to this equation is especially important.”
In Europe and the U.S. Revlimid has been approved for use in multiple myeloma, and in the U.S. it is also approved for a pre-leukemia condition called MDS. It is also being tested in other leukemias and lymphomas and even solid tumors.
Dr. Stephanie Gregory, the director of the section of Hematology at Rush University Medical Center said that there needs to be urgency in finding potent treatments to fight this ailment. In this regard, Revlimid can prove to be highly beneficial.