The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved the anemia drug Revlimid (lenalidomide) as a treatment for multiple myeloma, which is a type of blood cancer.
Celgene Corp, which makes this drug will now be able to market Revlimid for use in multiple myeloma. The treatment regimen demands that the drug be combined with the steroid dexamethasone in patients with multiple myeloma, who have earlier been treated with chemotherapy.
The approval was given after the results of clinical trials in which patients who took Revlimid and dexamethasone survived an average of 29.6 months. In contrast patients on dexamethasone and placebo survived only 20.2 months.
It is estimated that multiple myeloma affects 50,000 people in the United States, while 14,000 new cases are diagnosed every year.