Lung cancer treatment utilizing familiar lymphoma gene

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The FDA has granted accelerated approved to a new treatment for a specific subset of patients with non-small cell lung cancer. The treatment is a two-times-a-day oral pill called Xalkori (crizotinib).

Why is this relevant to lymphoma?

Because Xalkori targets a specific genetic mutation familiar to some lymphoma patients: namely, the annplastic lymphoma kinase, or ALK. Subtypes of lymphoma known as Anaplastic LargeT-Cell Lymphoma ALK+ and ALK- have been identified in recent years and treatments are underway to tackle both subtypes.

A genetic test has also received FDA approval to test for the gene. Although less than 10 percent of NSCLC patients have the ALK gene, Xalkori has been found to be effective in this narrow patient population.

Sources

FDA news release
Newsvine

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