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Lymphoma and Pets
Rituxan effective against more than just lymphoma
The monoclonal antibody Rituxan (rituximab), FDA approved for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis and B-cell lymphomas such as follicular lymphoma and diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL), either as a single agent or in conjunction with existing combination chemotherapy regimens (such as R-CHOP) may also be effective in treating a blood vessel disease.
Severe vasculitis is an inflammation of the blood vessels that causes tissue and organ damage, and sometimes can cause death. This life-threatening disease has generally been treated with the chemotherapeutic agent cyclophosphamide, which can come with its own set of health issues, including infertility and cancer.
According to the findings of a recent double-blind, multicenter Phase III clinical trial, rituximab worked equally as well as cyclophosphamide in putting one of two very common types of ANCA-associated vasculitis, severe Wegener's granulomatosis and microscopic polyangiitis, into remission, but did so without the potentially devastating side effects of cyclophosphamide.