Zevalin Plus BEAM Looks Good Against Aggressive NHLs

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At the 17th Congress of the European Hematology Association (EHA), biopharmaceutical company Spectrum announced new clinical data regarding the company's lead oncology product Zevalin.

The presentation at EHA concerned Zevalin administered in combination with the combination chemotherapy regimen BCNU, etoposide, cytarabine (Ara-C), and melphalan—known as BEAM therapy. Together they are known as Z-BEAM.

According to the latest clinical trial data, in 43 patients, Z-BEAM resulted in a 91% two-year overall survival (OS) rate in patients diagnosed with relapsed and/or refractory aggressive, CD20-positive non-Hodgkin's lymphoma compared to a 62% OS in patients who received BEAM alone.

Currently Zevalin is indicated only for patients with indolent or slow-growing non-Hodgkin's lymphomas. But based on these findings, Spectrum's development program for Zevalin has been expanded to include support for a larger trial exploring Z-BEAM as a preparatory regimen for lymphoma patients who are to undergo an autologous stem cell transplantation (ASCT). This so-called SPINOZA (Study with Preparatory Induction Of ZEVALIN in Aggressive Lymphoma) trial has begun recruiting patients.

"Patients with relapsed/refractory aggressive lymphomas have an abysmal prognosis and greatly reduced overall survival compared to those with indolent cancer. While stem cell transplantation has become the standard of care for appropriate patients in this setting, unfortunately there is no standard preparatory regimen prior to ASCT," said Rajesh C. Shrotriya, M.D., Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer of Spectrum. "We believe that these results, should they be confirmed in the broader clinical program currently underway, will be key in optimizing the preparative regimen by incorporating Zevalin and thus improving outcomes for these patients."

Source: MarketWatch

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