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Drugs in the pipeline: new therapies that could change treatment strategies
Date:4/15/2008

linical trial.

In the 16 patients evaluated so far, four have achieved either a partial or complete response with use of the novel agent AME-133v, said the studys lead investigator, Andres Forero, M.D., associate scientist at the University of Alabama, Birmingham, Comprehensive Cancer Center.

These first results suggest that AME-133v provides a mechanism of action that may be more potent and ultimately more effective than the treatments we have on hand for a subset of patients with this cancer, Forero said. Given these encouraging results, patients are currently being enrolled in a phase II study.

The majority of patients in this study either did not initially respond or relapsed after use of rituximab, the first monoclonal antibody therapy approved for use in lymphoma treatment.

AME-133v is a second-generation therapy that is believed to be a more specific treatment for follicular lymphoma in general, compared to rituximab, but is also thought to offer particular benefits for those patients who have a variant in the immune cells needed to attack the cancer, Forero says.

Monoclonal antibodies were the first successful targeted therapy for cancer, and we have now moved on to a whole new class of second generation antibodies for the treatment of many different lymphomas, Forero said. This is an exciting time.

Follicular lymphoma is a particularly difficult to treat subtype of non-Hodgkin lymphoma, which is a cancer that arises from white blood immune cells known as lymphocytes. Rituximab binds to CD20, a cell surface antigen expressed on almost all B-cell lymphomas as well as on normal B cells, and works to kill the cancer cell via a mechanism that is not yet understood.

Although treatment with rituximab as a single agent has resulted in significant responses in patients with almost every subtype of B-cell lymphoma, including follicular lymphoma, recent evidence has shown that some patients with effecto
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Contact: Staci Vernick Goldberg
Staci.goldberg@aacr.org
267-646-0616
American Association for Cancer Research
Source:Eurekalert

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