Novel therapeutic agents provide hope for patients with hard-to-treat blood disorders

December 9, 2012, American Society of Hematology

Encouraging safety and efficacy data on novel and emerging therapies presented at the 54th Annual Meeting of the American Society of Hematology (ASH) signal an important step forward in the development of treatment strategies for patients with hard-to-treat leukemia, myeloma, and myelofibrosis.

Ongoing discoveries of critical molecular markers, pathways, and other drivers of some of the most difficult-to-treat forms of have provided unprecedented opportunities for the development of new targeted therapies that attack, block, and silence the deadly that cause these disorders. These insights are revolutionizing how hematologists treat patients with resistant disease who otherwise had few options. Data presented today provide several examples of new targeted cancer therapies that have great potential to turn currently fatal disease subtypes into chronic conditions manageable with regular treatment.

"The significant drug discovery advances presented today represent our continued progress in fighting resistant disease, identifying and disabling signaling, and improving outcomes in patients who struggle with poor prognoses and few treatment options," said Aaron Schimmer, MD, PhD, moderator of the press conference and Clinician Scientist at the Princess Margaret Cancer Centre, University Health Network in Toronto. "Considering the incredible progress we have made over just a few years, I am encouraged and excited to see what the next decade has in store, and how the next generation of therapies will further help us conquer blood cancers and save lives."

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