Jorge E. Cortes, MD
While many patients with chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) have benefited tremendously from imatinib (Gleevec) and other tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs), that benefit only occurs if the drugs work initially and continue to work for years without the patient developing resistance. As a result, researchers are continuing to investigate TKIs to help manage patients who either do not respond to initial therapy or relapse after subsequent treatment.
“If you put those two lines of therapy together, most patients do well,” Cortes said. “However, that’s no consolation to all of those who are not doing well, and we need to improve on those things. That’s where these new drugs come in. You can, for now, at least offer them another option so you can get them to have a good outcome. Even when they fail the prior therapy, they still have the possibility of a good response and a durable response.”
Bosutinib Approved as Later Therapy
In September, the FDA approved bosutinib for the treatment of patients with chronic-, accelerated-, or blast-phase Philadelphia chromosome-positive CML who have developed resistance or intolerance to prior therapy.
Table. Drugs for Adult Patients With CMLa