A latest clinical trial has found that a particular combination of two drugs can help patients who suffer from leukemia to survive for longer days than what they currently do. A phase 3 trial was conducted on above 500 patients from U.S who had chronic lymphocytic leukemia. A combination of ibrurinib and rituximab showed better results in extending lifespan of those patients. 89.4% of those patients who were given this drug combination for an experimental study reported nil growth of leukemia for almost three years after the treatment. On the other hand, only 72.9% who were given conventional chemotherapy reported no progression of blood cancer.
When the overall survival rate was checked, irrespective of the fact that leukemia has developed in the body or not, the trial discovered that about 98.8% patients who were given the drug combination were doing well even after three years. In comparison to that, only 91.5% of those receiving the chemotherapy were alive.
Lead author of the study was Dr. Tait Shanafelt from Stanford University. Shanafelt and his group believed that this research conclusion might alter the treatment of CLL. Shanafelt said that, the results would turn out to be iconic in the treatment of chronic lymphocytic leukemia. He also said that the combination of two drugs is not only more effective but also has lesser chances of side effects compared to the standard treatment method. In future, patients might be willing to give up entirely on chemotherapy.
Dan Rosenbaum, aged 57 was one of the patients who was given this combo drug treatment. He later commented that the symptoms started reducing quickly after the treatment began. Earlier, he got exhausted faster and could hardly play single match of tennis. In fact, post that he would feel tired and sick for days and there was inflammation of his lymph nodes. However, as soon as the therapy began, he started getting better results and his lymph nodes showed improvement. Later, there was no trace of tumor during tests.