Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New maintenance therapy for multiple myeloma looks promising, study suggests

Date:
May 11, 2012
Source:
University of North Carolina School of Medicine
Summary:
Multiple myeloma is a form of cancer where the plasma cells in the bone marrow grow out of control, causing damage to bones as well as predisposing patients to anemia, infection and kidney failure. Unfortunately, multiple myeloma continues to progress even after a transplant. A new study now offers promising news about a new long-term therapy, lenalidomide, that can be used after transplantation to slow down the progression of the disease.

Multiple myeloma is a form of cancer where the plasma cells in the bone marrow grow out of control, causing damage to bones as well as predisposing patients to anemia, infection and kidney failure. A medical procedure called autologous hematopoietic stem cell transplantation, commonly known as a stem cell transplant, is frequently an important treatment option for many patients.

Related Articles


Unfortunately, multiple myeloma continues to progress even after a transplant. A study recently published in the New England Journal of Medicine offers promising news about a new long-term therapy, lenalidomide, that can be used after transplantation to slow down the progression of the disease.

Thomas Shea, MD, Director of the Bone Marrow and Stem Cell Transplant Program and Associate Director for Outreach Programs at UNC Lineberger and Don Gabriel, MD, Professor of Medicine in the division of hematology/oncology, were both co-authors on the clinical trial, which measured the effect of maintenance lenalidomide therapy on disease-free progression after transplant.

The phase 3 study demonstrated that maintenance therapy with lenalidomide, an oral drug that can be taken for many months or even years, is associated with significant improvement in outcomes for patients with newly diagnosed myeloma who have undergone a transplant. The probability of surviving free of disease progression (the primary end point) for three years was 59 percent in the lenalidomide group, as compared with 35 percent in the placebo group.

"The results of this trial will change our treatment of multiple myeloma patients," said Dr. Shea.

"While lenalidomide has some risks, including an increase in people developing second cancers, it generally appears to be well-tolerated when given long-term and was associated with a delay in time to progression of the myeloma as well as an improvement in overall survival" he added.

Shea noted that another study in France showed similar improvement in delaying progression of the myeloma following transplant, but did not improve how long patients lived after their transplant compared to those receiving a placebo. Additional studies need to be conducted and longer follow-up of the current studies will need to be undertaken to confirm whether there is a real survival benefit of lenalidomide therapy for these patients.

The U.S. trial was supported by the National Cancer Institute. Celgene provided the lenalidomide and placebo used in this trial.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of North Carolina School of Medicine. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Philip L. McCarthy, Kouros Owzar, Craig C. Hofmeister, David D. Hurd, Hani Hassoun, Paul G. Richardson, Sergio Giralt, Edward A. Stadtmauer, Daniel J. Weisdorf, Ravi Vij, Jan S. Moreb, Natalie Scott Callander, Koen Van Besien, Teresa Gentile, Luis Isola, Richard T. Maziarz, Don A. Gabriel, Asad Bashey, Heather Landau, Thomas Martin, Muzaffar H. Qazilbash, Denise Levitan, Brian McClune, Robert Schlossman, Vera Hars, John Postiglione, Chen Jiang, Elizabeth Bennett, Susan Barry, Linda Bressler, Michael Kelly, Michele Seiler, Cara Rosenbaum, Parameswaran Hari, Marcelo C. Pasquini, Mary M. Horowitz, Thomas C. Shea, Steven M. Devine, Kenneth C. Anderson, Charles Linker. Lenalidomide after Stem-Cell Transplantation for Multiple Myeloma. New England Journal of Medicine, 2012; 366 (19): 1770 DOI: 10.1056/NEJMoa1114083

Cite This Page:

University of North Carolina School of Medicine. "New maintenance therapy for multiple myeloma looks promising, study suggests." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 11 May 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/05/120511133735.htm>.
University of North Carolina School of Medicine. (2012, May 11). New maintenance therapy for multiple myeloma looks promising, study suggests. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 28, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/05/120511133735.htm
University of North Carolina School of Medicine. "New maintenance therapy for multiple myeloma looks promising, study suggests." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/05/120511133735.htm (accessed November 28, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Friday, November 28, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Rural India's Low-Cost Sanitary Pad Revolution

Rural India's Low-Cost Sanitary Pad Revolution

AFP (Nov. 28, 2014) — One man hopes his invention -– a machine that produces cheap sanitary pads –- will help empower Indian women. Duration: 01:51 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Research on Bats Could Help Develop Drugs Against Ebola

Research on Bats Could Help Develop Drugs Against Ebola

AFP (Nov. 28, 2014) — In Africa's only biosafety level 4 laboratory, scientists have been carrying out experiments on bats to understand how virus like Ebola are being transmitted, and how some of them resist to it. Duration: 01:18 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
WHO Says Male Ebola Survivors Should Abstain From Sex

WHO Says Male Ebola Survivors Should Abstain From Sex

Newsy (Nov. 28, 2014) — WHO cites four studies that say Ebola can still be detected in semen up to 82 days after the onset of symptoms. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola Leaves Orphans Alone in Sierra Leone

Ebola Leaves Orphans Alone in Sierra Leone

AFP (Nov. 27, 2014) — The Ebola epidemic sweeping Sierra Leone is having a profound effect on the country's children, many of whom have been left without any family members to support them. Duration: 01:02 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins