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Oncologist. 2007 Jun;12(6):664-89.

New drugs for myeloma.

Author information

  • 1Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Harvard Medical School, 44 Binney Street, Dana 1B02, Boston, Massachusetts 02115, USA. paul_richardson@dfci.harvard.edu

Abstract

Although multiple myeloma remains incurable with conventional treatments, management of the disease has recently been transformed with the introduction of three novel agents, bortezomib, thalidomide, and lenalidomide. The proteasome inhibitor bortezomib is approved for the treatment of patients who have received one prior therapy; there is a growing body of clinical evidence showing its effectiveness alone and in combination in the frontline setting, with high response rates and consistently high rates of complete response. Thalidomide plus dexamethasone is approved as frontline treatment of multiple myeloma. Other combination regimens including thalidomide have demonstrated substantial activity in both relapsed and frontline settings. Recently, the thalidomide analogue lenalidomide has been approved, in combination with dexamethasone, for the treatment of patients who have received one prior therapy; this regimen has shown promising results in the frontline setting. These agents represent a new generation of treatments for multiple myeloma that affect both specific intracellular signaling pathways and the tumor microenvironment. Other novel, targeted therapies are also being evaluated in preclinical and clinical studies. Regimens incorporating bortezomib, thalidomide, lenalidomide, and other novel agents, together with commonly used conventional drugs, represent a promising future direction in myeloma treatment. At present, further investigation is required to assess the safety and activity of combinations integrating these other novel agents. However, bortezomib, thalidomide, and lenalidomide are now in widespread clinical use. This review therefore focuses on the extensive clinical data available from studies of these drugs in the treatment of newly diagnosed and advanced multiple myeloma.

PMID:
17602058
DOI:
10.1634/theoncologist.12-6-664
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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