SEP 09, 2016 5:55 AM PDT

A New Cancer Drug That Melts Away Tumors?


A new chemotherapy drug for chronic lymphocytic leukemia has been given approval by the FDA. CLL is the most common form of leukemia in adults and this drug has done spectacularly well in clinical trials. It's the kind of drug experts called "target therapy" and it's the newest one in the field of precision medicine for cancer. It targets a specific protein in cancer cells, the BCL 2 protein.

It's been described as "melting away" cancer cells. The BCL2 protein is what drives CLL to spread, allowing the cells to replicate at a breakneck speed. The drug stops this ability, rendering the cancer cells inactive. When the cells can no longer divide, apoptosis-cell death-occurs. The drug is also thought to produce less severe side effects than other chemo drugs. Researchers expect it to cause mild to moderate nausea, but say it will not cause hair loss and it will not result in neuropathy in the extremities as many other cancer drugs do. 80% of patients in the clinical trials had good results. The remainder of patients had more significant side effects and had to stop the drug, experienced a rare complication of renal failure or had more advanced stages of the disease.
About the Author
  • I'm a writer living in the Boston area. My interests include cancer research, cardiology and neuroscience. I want to be part of using the Internet and social media to educate professionals and patients in a collaborative environment.
You May Also Like
JUL 30, 2020
Space & Astronomy
Indian Schoolgirls Discover Asteroid Moving Towards Earth
JUL 30, 2020
Indian Schoolgirls Discover Asteroid Moving Towards Earth
During a project sponsored by Space India and NASA, two schoolgirls aged 14 in the 10th grade discovered an asteroid nea ...
AUG 05, 2020
Space & Astronomy
Mars Was Shaped by Ice Sheets - not Rivers
AUG 05, 2020
Mars Was Shaped by Ice Sheets - not Rivers
Physicists have found that in the distant past, Mars may not have been warm enough to carry vast oceans. Instead, in new ...
AUG 11, 2020
Cannabis Sciences
High THC Cannabis Linked to Anxiety
AUG 11, 2020
High THC Cannabis Linked to Anxiety
Researchers have found that people who use strains of cannabis high in tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the psychoactive comp ...
AUG 18, 2020
Space & Astronomy
First Visitor from Another Solar System Remains Unknown
AUG 18, 2020
First Visitor from Another Solar System Remains Unknown
An object hurtling through our solar system known as 'Oumuamua' is our first visitor from another solar sys ...
SEP 24, 2020
Chemistry & Physics
Turning Pulsars into Deep Space Beacons
SEP 24, 2020
Turning Pulsars into Deep Space Beacons
Navigating beyond Earth's orbit is tricky. Any misstep in movement could lead to the crushes of space probes and ves ...
NOV 19, 2020
Chemistry & Physics
Unlocking the Secret of a Tasty Cold Drink
NOV 19, 2020
Unlocking the Secret of a Tasty Cold Drink
Sour beer isn't for everyone: its unique taste of acidity and tartness could excite some but turn off others.  ...
Loading Comments...