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Ibrutinib has 'unprecedented' impact on mantle cell lymphoma
Date:12/14/2012

ATLANTA - An international study of ibrutinib in people with relapsed or refractory mantle cell lymphoma (MCL) continues to show unprecedented and durable results with few side effects.

Researchers from The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center presented interim findings of the multi-center Phase 2 study today at the 54th American Society of Hematology Annual Meeting and Exposition.

"I believe we are witnessing a breakthrough in mantle cell lymphoma. This is great news for patients," said Michael Wang, M.D., associate professor in MD Anderson's Departments of Lymphoma and Myeloma and Stem Cell Transplantation and Cellular Therapy. Wang is lead author of the study.

Wang, director of the mantle cell lymphoma (MCL) program at MD Anderson, has spent the past 12 years researching the disease, including clinical trials of proteasome inhibitors, immune-modulating agents and an mTOR inhibitor.

"In a heavily treated relapsed or refractory population, oral ibrutinib induced a response rate as high as 70 percent - better than any other single agent ever tested in MCL," he said. "The response is durable with a long progression-free survival. "

Dangerous disease presents treatment challenges

MCL is a rare and aggressive B-cell subtype of non-Hodgkin lymphoma that, according to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, accounts for 6 percent of non-Hodgkin cases. Despite high response rates to initial combination-drug chemotherapy, which is highly toxic, patients often relapse.

Bruton's tyrosine kinase is a mediator of B cell receptor signaling, which is essential for normal B-cell development. Ibrutinib inhibits Bruton's tyrosine kinase (BTK), causing cell death and decreasing cellular migration and adhesion in malignant B-cells.

"The foundation for this clinical success is based on biology," Wang said. "The B-cell receptor pathway is critical in B-cell lymphoma. BTK is the driver molecu
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Contact: Scott Merville
smerville@mdanderson.org
713-792-0661
University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center
Source:Eurekalert  

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