In an interview with Dr. Adrian Weistner from the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, MD, we discussed the latest data on novel oral therapies for chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) presented at the 2014 American Society of Hematology meeting.
Take Away Points:
- There are now new excellent non-chemotherapy treatment options for CLL, especially in the relapsed/refractory and upfront (treatment-naïve) setting for patients with deletion 17p where there were few options just a few years ago.
- Relapsed/refractory patients with deletion 17p are at higher risk for relapse and will likely need combination therapy.
- Immunotherapy such as PD-1 checkpoint inhibitors might be a smart second drug for such combination therapy.
Dr. Wiestner takes a wise and sober look at the state of art and what is known and what still needs research with the novel oral therapies now being used to treat CLL. His discussion of a trial combination of ibrutinib and a PD-1 checkpoint inhibitor is now the basis of a clinical trial.
Research is moving fast and it is critical that we patients are seen by doctors who are up to the minute on the latest in CLL and that we carefully consider appropriate clinical trials as a viable treatment option.
Here is Dr. Wiestner’s nice overview of novel oral therapies from ASH 2014.
Dr. Brian Koffman 05/13/2015