Imatinib benefits CML patients who fail interferon treatment


According to findings published in Cancer, the journal of the American Cancer Society, many patients diagnosed with chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) who fail to respond to primary interferon treatments have a superior option awaiting them.

The option is imatinib (Gleevec), the drug that revolutionized the treatment of CML patients. Those who fail interferon saw long-term benefits when switched over to imatinib.

Imatinib has been the standard of care in CML for many years, but researchers at MD Anderson Cancer Center wanted to know the outcomes of patients who had began treatment on interferon and were switched to imatinib.

Analyzing 368 CML patients, they determined that almost 70 percent of these patients survived for at least ten years--compared to patients who failed interferon and had no access to imatinib, 20 to 30 percent of whom lived ten years.

Source: Medical News Today

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