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Promising New Drug Uses Antibody Targeted Chemotherapy To Fight Leukemia

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A Phase I study of patients with advanced AML demonstrated early efficacy and defined the appropriate dosing regimen for Phase II studies. Promising data are now emerging from the current pivotal Phase II trial in the U.S. that involves patients following relapse after initial AML chemotherapy. A preliminary analysis of these data show that CMA-676 given alone produces a remission rate of approximately 40 percent - a rate comparable to that of standard combination chemotherapy regimens. These data also show that CMA-676 has other important advantages.

"The side effects are mild compared to standard chemotherapy," says Eric Sievers, M.D., of Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. "Also, the treatment did not produce some of the more common chemotherapy-induced side effects."

Standard combination chemotherapy treatment produces significant major organ damage, and sores both in the mouth and in the intestinal tract (frequent sources for opportunistic infections). CMA-676 treatment does not produce these effects. As with all standard chemotherapy treatments, CMA-676 produces a temporary suppression of bone marrow and blood cell counts.

CMA-676 is administered as a single agent, in contrast with chemotherapy regimens that involve multiple drugs that increase the likelihood of adverse side effects and drug-drug interactions. It is administered in two IV infusions fourteen days apart, and many patients received it on an outpatient basis.

Similar studies of the new treatment are underway throughout Europe and Canada.


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Contact: Susan Edmonds
sedmonds@fhcrc.org
206-667-2896
Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center
7-Dec-1998


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