Study Finds Ruxolitinib Effective in Reducing Symptoms for Myelofibrosis Patients
By susanashephard from Mayo Clinic News March 1, 2012 270
For patients diagnosed with myelofibrosis, a bone marrow disorder that disrupts the body’s normal production of blood cells, new hope may be on the horizon.
A study, published in the March 1 edition of the New England Journal of Medicine, found the drug Ruxolitinib was able to effectively improve the quality of life for those with intermediate and advanced forms of this chronic condition and reduce symptoms better than existing therapies.
Mayo Clinic hematologist Ruben Mesa, M.D., was a key member of the research team which found Ruxolitinib reduced spleen volume in nearly all of the patients studied, with 28 percent of the patients in the Ruxolitinib group reaching a 35 percent reduction in spleen volume. An enlarged spleen, a common symptom of Myelofibrosis, causes patients discomfort and can lead to the need for blood transfusions.
The study findings from the two clinical trials led to the FDA approval of Ruxolitinib in November, 2011.
“These were the largest, randomized clinical trials ever performed for Myelofibrosis and represent a significant benefit over therapies we have used in the past,” said Ruben Mesa, M.D., Chair of the Division of Hematology and Medical Oncology at Mayo Clinic in Arizona and an author of the New England Journal of Medicine paper.
In addition to Dr. Mesa, other principal researchers included lead investigator Srdan Verstovsek, M.D. of the MD Anderson Cancer Center in Texas and Claire Harrison, DM, FRCP of St. Thomas’ Hospital in London, U.K.
Journalists: The following video clips from Dr. Mesa are available for download and use in your stories.
What is Ruxolitinib? MOV
Study Findings: MOV
How does Ruxolitinib work? MOV