By Sean Marshall
It was announced this week in an article published on Medical Press' website that “an established drug for recurrent multiple myeloma might effectively be re purposed to improve the survival and day-to-day lives of patients with devastating sickle cell disease.”This was all according to “revealing new research by a Feinstein Institute for Medical Research scientist.”
For those who don't know myeloma is also known as plasma cell myeloma,myelomatosis, or Kahler's disease is a cancer of plasma cells, a type of white blood cell normally responsible for producing antibodies
According to the article the study was by Lionel Blanc, PhD, assistant investigator at the Feinstein Institute. AS well as the fact that the report will be publicly available on the 17th of December. Meaning we can all see the details first hand. The data can be found in the journal Blood.
Other important information the article gave was that “Dr. Blanc's research, was the first to identify how the drug pomalidomide increases production of fetal hemoglobin, known to interfere with the so-called "sickling" of red blood cells implicated in sickle cell disease.”
Other important details included Illuminating “pomalidomide's mechanism of action offers proof of concept that the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA)-approved medication could potentially be used to treat SCD, representing better outcomes compared to current drug treatment for the 100,000 Americans with SCD, an inherited disorder causing poor oxygen delivery, organ damage and even death.”
This is all good news and we hope the Lionel Blanc study continues. The original article can be found here: http://medicalxpress.com/news/2015-12-multiple-myeloma-drug-revolutionize-treatment.html
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By Sean Marshall
It was announced this week by erurekalert.com as well as Boston medical and oakland medical that “treatment with the antiplatelet agent prasugrel does not significantly reduce the rate of pain crises or severe lung complications in children with sickle cell disease.” This information came to light by a report by the New England Journal of Medicine. This came as a shock because of the importance of the New England Journal is one of the largest and most geographically diverse international clinical trials on sickle cell disease to date.
This was proven by a “trial that was a double blind, randomized, placebo-controlled phase 3 clinical trial held at 51 sites across 13 nations in the Americas, Europe, the Middle East, Asia and Africa. Led by researchers at Dana-Farber/Boston Children's Cancer and Blood Disorders Center and UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital Oakland,”
This was all done because the clinic was attempting to actually reach a goal. That goal was “to create a trial the to determine whether prasugrel, a medication used in adult patients to reduce thrombotic cardiovascular events, could also significantly reduce the rate of rate of vaso-occlusive crises (VOCs) -- defined as pain crises or acute chest syndrome -- in children with sickle cell disease.”
Prasugrel is a drug that is suppose to “prevent platelets from aggregating by blocking an enzyme called P2Y12.” The good news is that the drug “is approved for use in adult cardiac patients in the U.S. to reduce the risk of clots following angioplasty or insertion of an arterial stent.”
This is a mixed bag. On the one hand it is disappointing that a drug that is suppose to be helping is not and there isn't an immediate solution, but it's always a good thing to know that certain medications are still being tested despite use by the public.
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Unfortunately there were no major news updates this week. Check in next week for more coverage.
This section is solely to let our Sickle Soldiers tell their story trials & tribulations alongside things they feel are wrong in the Sickle Cell Community