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Expert Weighs in on Recent AML Advances

Angelica Welch
Published: Thursday, Sep 28, 2017

 Harry Erba, MD, PhD

Harry Erba, MD, PhD
Four major approvals this year have dramatically improved the treatment landscape for acute myeloid leukemia (AML).

In an interview with OncLive during the 2017 SOHO Annual Meeting, Harry Erba, MD, PhD, professor of medicine, director, University of Alabama (UAB) Hematologic Malignancy Program, UAB School of Medicine, reflected on these approvals and their effect on the treatment of AML moving forward.

OncLive: What have been the significant updates in AML over the past year?

Erba: For the clinician, the most important updates in AML are really the FDA approvals, because now we have to think about how we are going to incorporate these new drugs into our clinical practice. For decades, we have been using 3-and-7 daunorubicin-idarubicin with cytarabine as initial induction therapy for AML. 

What is the impact of the gemtuzumab ozogamizin approval?

Following the initial approval of gemtuzumab in 2000 based on relapsed/refractory patients with AML, there were a number of studies looking at the combination of gemtuzumab with chemotherapy in previously-untreated patients. There was a meta-analysis that combined gemtuzumab in various doses with induction and consolidation chemotherapy. Robert Hills published results from that meta-analysis which showed that there was a benefit in terms of overall survival, and event-free survival for CD33-positive AML patients who receive gemtuzumab ozogamizin during induction consolidation.
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