Dr. Wierda on Treating CLL Patients with 17p Deletion
William G. Wierda, MD, PhD, professor, Department of Leukemia, Division of Cancer Medicine, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, discusses treatment options for patients with CLL who harbor the 17p deletion.
Wierda says CLL patients who have been previously treated and have a 17p deletion are the highest risk group of patients. Untreated CLL patients who harbor the 17p deletion, a small minority of patients going on frontline therapy, have a short first remission if they respond well to standard treatment. However, the majority of these patients do not experience complete remissions and their disease is not held in check for long, Wierda says.
Physicians do not have much experience in treating previously untreated 17p deletion patients with ibrutinib. However, Wierda says these patients may benefit the most from frontline ibrutinib, as early data have shown that ibrutinib improves the survival of relapsed patients.
Weirda believes that there is no standard treatment for CLL patients who harbor the 17p deletion.