Wed. Apr 17th, 2024

A clinical trial in the United States has shown that an experimental pill called revumenib has achieved complete cancer remission in 18 patients with acute myeloid leukemia, a form of blood cancer that is the most common in adults and has a three-year survival of just 25%. The disease causes the runaway production of defective cells in the marrow of the bones, which can be fatal if not treated early. Revumenib targets two genetic subtypes in which a protein called menin facilitates the progression of leukemia. The drug binds to this protein and inhibits it, thanks to its complex chemical recipe: C32H47FN6O4S. The trial results are preliminary and do not imply a definitive cure, but those responsible for the experiment are optimistic. “We believe this drug is remarkably effective and we hope it will be available to all patients who need it,” says Ghayas Issa, MD, of the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. The promising results are published in the journal Nature, one of the most prestigious scientific publications in the world. However, the researchers emphasize that the drug does not work in all cases and that it is not a panacea, since, in most cases, targeted therapies can reverse leukemiabut hardly cure it by themselves.

May benefit nearly 400,000 people with acute leukemia

The hematologist Pau Montesinos, coordinator of the Spanish Group of Acute Myeloid Leukemia, believes that the new data is encouraging, but stresses the importance of testing revumenib in hundreds of people to confirm its safety and efficacy. Montesinos’ own team will participate in the next international pill trials, developed by the American pharmaceutical company Syndax Pharmaceuticals. The oncologist Ghayas Issa, responsible for the experiment, estimates that these new pills can benefit almost 400,000 people with acute leukemias resistant to other treatments, both myeloid and the most frequent in children, called lymphocytic. Experts acknowledge that the economic factor will be key if the pill is finally approved, since the price of the latest oral cancer drugs is often high. Revumenib has achieved complete cancer remission in 18 patients with acute myeloid leukemia, a promising but preliminary result that requires further testing to confirm its safety and efficacy. The drug targets a specific protein and its success could benefit hundreds of thousands of people with acute leukemias resistant to other treatments. However, experts warn that the drug does not work in all cases and that it is not a panacea for the disease. In addition, the economic factor will be key to its approval and access to patients.

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