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.

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 August 27, 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 August 27, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

WHO Calls for Ban on E-Cigarette Sales to Minors

WHO Calls for Ban on E-Cigarette Sales to Minors

AFP (Aug. 26, 2014) The World Health Organization called Tuesday on governments should ban the sale of e-cigarettes to minors, warning that they pose a "serious threat" to foetuses and young people. Duration: 01:44 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Have You Ever Been 'Sleep Drunk?' 1 in 7 Has

Have You Ever Been 'Sleep Drunk?' 1 in 7 Has

Newsy (Aug. 26, 2014) A study published in the journal "Neurology" interviewed more than 19,000 people and found 15 percent suffer from being "sleep drunk." Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Does Medical Marijuana Reduce Painkiller Overdose Deaths?

Does Medical Marijuana Reduce Painkiller Overdose Deaths?

Newsy (Aug. 26, 2014) A new study found fewer deaths from prescription drug overdoses in states that have legalized medical marijuana. But experts disagree on the results. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Official: British Ebola Sufferer Receiving Experimental Drug

Official: British Ebola Sufferer Receiving Experimental Drug

AFP (Aug. 26, 2014) A British nurse infected with Ebola while working in Sierra Leone is being given the same experimental drug used on two US missionaries who have recovered for the disease, doctors in London say. Duration: 00:44 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:
from the past week

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