Drug Updates

Prostate cancer, the second most common type of cancer in men, is expected to affect 11.6% of all men during their lifetime. In fact, more than 3 million men in the United States are living with prostate cancer. It is estimated that in 2017, 161,360 men were newly diagnosed with prostate cancer, and 26,730 men died from the disease.
Gastroenteropancreatic neuroendocrine tumors (GEP-NETs), also known as carcinoids and islet-cell tumors, are tumors of the neuroendocrine cells that occur in the gastrointestinal (GI) tract. GEP-NETs are heterogeneous and complex. Although relatively rare, GEP-NETs are more common than other tumors of the GI tract, including stomach and pancreatic carcinomas combined.
Two human genes, BRCA1 and BRCA2 (BRCA1/2), produce proteins that block the growth of cancer, such as breast or ovarian cancer. These proteins ensure the stability of each cell’s genetic material and help to repair damaged DNA. A mutation in either BRCA results in these proteins not functioning correctly. Specifically, DNA damage may not be repaired effectively, which can lead to cancer.
Acute myeloid leukemia (AML) is a rare but deadly cancer. In 2018, approximately 19,500 new cases of AML were estimated to be diagnosed in the United States and more than 10,600 people to die from the disease. Clinical trials data show that up to 70% of adults with AML have disease that completely responds to initial treatment with cytotoxic chemotherapy. However, the 3-year survival rate for patients with AML remains poor, at approximately 25%.

Treatment with ivosidenib, an IDH1 inhibitor, resulted in an objective response rate of 41.6% in a phase 1 dose-escalation and expansion clinical trial of patients with relapsed or refractory acute myeloid leukemia and IDH1 mutation, according to data presented at ASH 2017.

For the first time, a randomized clinical trial has shown significant tumor shrinkage with a phosphoinositide-3-kinase inhibitor in patients with estrogen receptor–positive, HER2-negative early breast cancer, according to results presented at the 2017 ESMO Congress.

“There’s a human behind the patient, and he can tell us what he needs. He’s really the expert in the field,” Christine B. Boers-Doets, MSc, Netherlands Leiden University Medical Center, told attendees at the recent ESMO International Consensus Conference for Advanced Breast Cancer.

The combination of the investigational drug quizartinib plus azacitidine (Vidaza) or low-dose cytarabine has substantial activity in patients with myeloid leukemias and FLT3 mutations.

Marginal-zone lymphoma (MZL) is a malignancy that arises from B-lymphocytes in the marginal zone of lymphoid tissue. This slow-growing indolent B-cell lymphoma represents approximately 12% of all cases of non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) in adults.
In April 2016, venetoclax (Venclexta; Janssen) became the first BCL-2 inhibitor to be approved by the FDA for relapsed, high-risk chronic lymphocytic leukemia.
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