Immunotherapy Elicits Positive Response in Acute Myeloid Leukemia and Myelodysplastic Syndromes Patients

According to a story from mdmag.com, a recent study that was presented at the 2019 meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology has demonstrated the potential of a two part combination therapy as a treatment for acute myeloid leukemia and myelodysplastic syndromes. This combination consists of an antibody called Hu5F9-G4 (5F9) and the drug azacytidine. This combination was able to cause significant responses in patients with these cancers.

About Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML)

Acute myeloid leukemia, also known as acute myelogenous leukemia, is a type of blood cancer which affects myeloblasts, stem cells that would normally develop into myeloid white blood cells. Symptoms include an increased risk of infection, easy bruising and bleeding, fatigue, shortness of breath, fever, weight and appetite loss, anemia, and bone/joint pain. Treatment for this cancer is most often chemotherapy or stem cell transplant; there are very limited options for patients with relapsed disease. The five year survival rate for acute myeloid leukemia is only 27 percent in the US. Click here to learn more about acute myeloid leukemia.

About Myelodysplastic Syndromes

Myelodysplastic syndromes are a type of blood cancer in which developing blood cells remain immature and fail to transform into usable blood cells. Myelodysplastic syndromes rarely present with symptoms initially, but it can eventually present with anemia, neutropenia, thrombocytopenia, cell abnormalities, chromosome abnormalities, enlarged spleen and/or liver, easy bleeding and bruising, and infections. Treatment may include bone marrow transplant, stem cell transplant, blood products, and certain chemotherapy agents. Click here to learn more about myelodysplastic syndromes.

About The Study

The study included a combination of patients that had either received prior treatment or were treatment naive. Of the 25 patients that were deemed evaluable at the conclusion of the trial, eight of them were able to achieve complete remission using 5F9 and azacytidine.

About 5F9

5F9 is an immune therapy which targets the macrophage immune checkpoint CD47. The drug blocks the activity of this checkpoint, which allows the immune system to correctly identify cancer cells and attack them. Following the encouraging results, an expansion cohort of the study is ongoing.

Check out the original study here.


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