Promising Blood Cancer Treatments

by Sheela Philomena on Dec 26 2011 12:22 PM

 Promising Blood Cancer Treatments
JTCancer Center researchers at ASH meeting presented promising treatments for blood-related cancers - leukemia, lymphoma and multiple myeloma.
Research highlights from the John Theurer Cancer Center included a global clinical trial of a new type of medication (HDAC inhibitor) against relapsed multiple myeloma led at the John Theurer Cancer Center; an examination of treatment outcomes for more than 900 lymphoma patients who received stem cell transplants at the John Theurer Cancer Center; an analysis of Phase III data for a new cancer drug as it applies to older chronic myeloid leukemia patients; results from a Phase III, 50-center study of stem cell versus bone marrow transplantation for high-risk leukemia patients; a laboratory analysis of a gene-encoded protein that may have a protective role in difficult-to-treat mantle cell lymphoma; and a comparison study of the best transplant options for myeloma patients who relapse after autologous stem cell transplantation.

"The American Society of Hematology meeting is where the most important advances in therapies for difficult-to-treat blood-related cancers are announced," said Andre Goy, M.D., M.S., Chairman and Director, Chief of Lymphoma, and Director, Clinical and Translational Cancer Research, John Theurer Cancer Center. "Our extensive involvement in the ASH meeting is indicative of the major role we play in cancer research not just here in the U.S., but around the world."

ASH is the world's largest professional society concerned with the causes and treatment of blood disorders. More than half of the John Theurer Cancer Center presentations showcased at the ASH Annual Meeting had been considered exceptionally significant and were presented orally, including Phase I and Phase II studies, multi-center, international trials in collaboration with leading cancer institutions.

"We are proud to make such a significant contribution to advancing the treatment of hematologic cancers, and to lead or participate in so many global clinical studies alongside leading cancer institutions such as the National Cancer Institute, Mayo Clinic, MD Anderson and Dana-Farber," said Andrew L. Pecora, M.D., F.A.C.P., C.P.E., Chief Innovations Officer and Professor and Vice President of Cancer Services, John Theurer Cancer Center. "We are especially happy that our leadership in cancer research translates into early access to promising treatments for our patients, and major advances in care for all who have cancer."

Division, John Theurer Cancer Center and colleagues from other cancer centers analyzed data from the Center for International Blood and Marrow Transplant Research in order to compare outcomes for the two procedures for patients with multiple myeloma who relapsed after an initial AHCT. Data from 137 autologous transplant and 152 allogeneic transplant patients was examined.The researchers' statistical analysis revealed a higher risk of death and lower survival rates for alloHCT patients. These patients were also at a higher risk for treatment-related mortality. The authors conclude the data demonstrates that the value of alloHCT for multiple myeloma patients after prior relapse from AHCT is limited.