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News and Treatment Updates

Here's where you'll find a regularly updated, broad range of articles written by the AAMDSIF team, allied health organizations and news organizations. By staying well-informed, patients and families are practicing a form of self-support that will help them be more effective self-advocates when engaging with health care providers.

FDA approves Onureg (azacitidine tablets) for acute myeloid leukemia

Originally Published: 09/01/2020
Article Source: External Web Content
On September 1, 2020, the Food and Drug Administration approved azacitidine tablets (ONUREG®, Celgene Corporation) for continued treatment of patients with acute myeloid leukemia who achieved first complete remission (CR) or complete remission with incomplete blood count recovery (CRi) following intensive induction chemotherapy and are not able to complete intensive curative therapy. Efficacy was investigated in QUAZAR (NCT01757535), a multicenter, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. Patients (n=472) who achieved CR or CRi with intensive induction chemotherapy with or without...

Patient and physician perceptions about blood transfusions in the myelodysplastic syndromes

Originally Published: 09/01/2020
Article Source: External Web Content
Abstract Background Little is known about the shared decision-making between patients with transfusion-dependent (TD) myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS) and their physicians about the benefits, risks, and alternatives to reduce the need for blood transfusions. Methods and Materials We conducted interviews and two cross-sectional surveys of MDS patients and MDS physicians in the US about the use of blood transfusions and disease-modifying therapies (DMTs). Responses from 157 MDS patients and 109 MDS physicians were analyzed. Results (continued at link)

Understanding the Impact of Telomere Length and Mutations on Transplant Outcomes

Originally Published: 08/31/2020
Article Source: External Web Content
Advances in Hematologic Malignancies Issue 12, Summer 2020 — R. Coleman Lindsley, MD, PhD Identifying patients at high risk of fatal treatment toxicity is a central challenge in allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT). More accurate prediction of non-relapse mortality (NRM) risk could inform clinical decisions about timing and approach to HSCT. Short telomere length impairs the cellular response to genotoxic and replicative stress, and limits the regenerative potential of many tissues, including the gastrointestinal mucosa and bone marrow. We recently completed a study that...

Guideline-based indicators for adult patients with myelodysplastic syndromes

Originally Published: 08/25/2020
Article Source: External Web Content
Key Points GBIs are measurable elements for quality of care and are currently lacking for adult MDS patients. We developed a GBI consensus for the domains of diagnosis (n = 14), therapy (n = 8), and provider/infrastructural characteristics (n = 7). Myelodysplastic syndromes (MDSs) represent a heterogeneous group of hematological stem cell disorders with an increasing burden on health care systems. Evidence-based MDS guidelines and recommendations (G/Rs) are published but do not necessarily translate into better quality of care if adherence is not maintained in daily clinical practice....

TP53 Mutation Status Possesses Prognostic Implications in MDS

Originally Published: 08/14/2020
Article Source: External Web Content
Patients with myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS) who have biallelic TP53 have worse outcomes, such as treatment-resistant disease, rapid disease progression, and low overall survival, versus those with monoallelic mutations, according to results from a study published in Nature Medicine.1 “In recent years, we have characterized which mutations are present in MDS and have established diagnostic tests that map which mutations are present in every patient. This information is used to guide treatment decisions; this is the vision of precision medicine,” Elli Papaemmanuil, PhD, the senior author of...

Clinical characteristics and risk factors associated with COVID-19 severity in patients with haematological malignancies in Italy: a retrospective, multicentre, cohort study

Originally Published: 08/13/2020
Article Source: External Web Content
Background Several small studies on patients with COVID-19 and haematological malignancies are available showing a high mortality in this population. The Italian Hematology Alliance on COVID-19 aimed to collect data from adult patients with haematological malignancies who required hospitalisation for COVID-19. Methods This multicentre, retrospective, cohort study included adult patients (aged ≥18 years) with diagnosis of a WHO-defined haematological malignancy admitted to 66 Italian hospitals between Feb 25 and May 18, 2020, with laboratory-confirmed and symptomatic COVID-19. Data cutoff for...

ASH Issues Guidelines on Newly Diagnosed AML in Older Adults

Originally Published: 08/12/2020
Article Source: External Web Content
In evidence-based guidelines issued by the American Society of Hematology and published in the Aug. 11 issue of Blood Advances, recommendations are presented for the management of newly diagnosed acute myeloid leukemia (AML) in older adults. Mikkael A. Sekeres, M.D., from the Taussig Cancer Center at the Cleveland Clinic, and colleagues developed evidence-based guidelines to support patients, clinicians, and other health care professionals in their decisions about AML management in older adults. The recommendations relate to newly diagnosed de novo, treatment-related, and secondary AML in...

American Society of Hematology 2020 guidelines for treating newly diagnosed acute myeloid leukemia in older adults

Originally Published: 08/06/2020
Article Source: External Web Content
Abstract Background: Older adults with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) represent a vulnerable population in whom disease-based and clinical risk factors, patient goals, prognosis, and practitioner- and patient-perceived treatment risks and benefits influence treatment recommendations. Objective: These evidence-based guidelines of the American Society of Hematology (ASH) are intended to support patients, clinicians, and other health care professionals in their decisions about management of AML in older adults. (article continued at link)

Oral Hypomethylating Agent Regimen Approved for MDS Improves Outpatient Treatment Options

Originally Published: 08/05/2020
Article Source: External Web Content
In an interview with Targeted Oncology, Guillermo Garcia-Manero, MD, discussed the FDA’s recent approval of oral decitabine and cedazuridine as treatment of patients with myelodysplastic syndromes and the data that supported this decision. In July 2020, the FDA granted approval to the combination of oral decitabine and cedazuridine (Inqovi) as treatment of adult patients with myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS), based on the positive findings from the phase 3 ASCERTAIN clinical trial. The indications for this approval include patients with previously treated or untreated de novo and secondary...

FDA Grants Aspacytarabine Fast Track Status for Older Patients With AML

Originally Published: 08/04/2020
Article Source: External Web Content
The FDA has granted a fast track designation for aspacytarabine as treatment for acute myeloid leukemia in adults aged 75 years or older who have comorbidities that preclude the utilization of intensive induction chemotherapy.   The FDA has granted a fast track designation for aspacytarabine (BST-236) as treatment for acute myeloid leukemia (AML) in adults aged 75 years or older who have comorbidities that preclude the utilization of intensive induction chemotherapy, according to an announcement from Biosight Ltd.1     “Receiving fast track designation from the FDA is an important...