Dr. Bose on Novel Agents Under Investigation in Essential Thrombocythemia


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Prithviraj Bose, MD, discusses novel agents under investigation in essential thrombocythemia.

Prithviraj Bose, MD, an associate professor in the Department of Leukemia of the Division of Cancer Medicine at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, discusses novel agents under investigation in essential thrombocythemia (ET).

While new mechanisms of action are under exploration, there have not been too many developments in ET, says Bose. Currently, the challenge in this disease is that because survival is so good, drug development is not as much of an unmet need compared with other cancers that have a much worse prognosis. 

However, some unmet needs do exist. For example, current therapies are unable to address symptoms of disease well. That is why ruxolitinib (Jakafi) would make a very important difference in the field, according to Bose.

Additionally, there is now interest in examining ropeginterferon alfa-2b, which has the trade name of Besremi in Europe, where it was approved in the beginning of 2019 for use in patients with polycythemia vera. There is interest in exploring the drug in patients with ET, with 1 trial having been publicly, Bose added. This could serve as a novel treatment for patients with ET, as interferons can yield deep molecular responses, explains Bose. The agent will be given every 2 weeks initially and then every 4 weeks, which could be beneficial for patients with EGFR mutations, concludes Bose.

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