In a nutshell
This study looked at the safety and effectiveness of blinatumomab (Blincyto) compared with standard chemotherapy in the treatment of acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL). The study found that blinatumomab was a safe and effective treatment option compared to chemotherapy in patients with ALL.
Acute lymphoblastic leukemia is a cancer of the bone marrow which affects the white blood cells of the immune system. It is often treated with strong chemotherapy drugs that have many side effects. Blinatumomab is a type of treatement that signals the immune system to attack cancer cells. It is important to research if this treatment is safe and effective for ALL.
Methods & findings
376 patients with ALL were included in the study. 267 received blinatumomab and 109 patients received standard chemotherapy.
231 (87%) of patients who received blinatumomab experienced a side effect. These included headache, sleeping problems, nausea, infections (34%), constipation, diarrhea, and low white blood cell count (18%). 100 (92%) patients who received standard chemotherapy experienced side effects. These included headache (3%), diarrhea, vomiting, and infections (52%).
Overall, when time on each treatment was taken into account, the blinatumomab group had a better safety profile than standard chemotherapy. Serious infections and low levels of blood cells were more common with chemotherapy. Cytokine-release syndrome was more common in the blinatumomab group (a condition where immune substances called cytokines are released into the blood, which can cause fever, nausea, and rash, among other symptoms).
The bottom line
The authors concluded that blinatumomab was a safe and effective treatment option for patients with ALL.
Published By :
Jul 10, 2018