Read Brian Koffman's Latest Post at his blog. As a CLL
patient and doctor he has his finger on the pulse of developmental drugs more than anyone else who has ever posted on this board. His latest post talks about idelalisab and test. Not so Long Ago when he first started his ibrutinib treatment he started feeling so well that he the suggested that he might even become an investor. That was good advice. I think his advice is still good.
This is what he said in May:THURSDAY, MAY 23, 2013
ASCO 2013: Press Release and Abstract about Idelalisib (CAL-101 or GS1101) in Treatment Naive CLL Patients
This is why I go to ASCO and ASH and hope to get to Europe for IWCLL. To get the inside scoop on these studies. To talk to the investigators about the data between the lines in their abstracts.
And to hear the good news.
I can't wait to push the presenters to get more of the details, but the overview in the press release is certainly impressive.
All nine patients with 17p del or mutated P53 responded and three had a CR (complete response).
93% progression-free survival at two years. And I love the fast disappearing B symptoms. Us patients just seem to feel so much better very quickly on most of these new small molecules.
Now admittedly this is an easy group to treat, all treatment-naive so the number should be good.
The 17% with significant pneumonia is more worrisome to me than the 1 in 4 with elevated liver enzymes. That usually resolves with stopping meds, and one can usually restart at a lower level without recurrent liver issues, but pneumonia can be fatal in CLL.
What I want is more information on those not still on the trial?
Why did the 17 of 64 drop out? What was the cause of the death in the three brave patients?
Why does the abstract say 18 drop outs and four deaths? I have pasted it at the end
Why are the CR levels so low with this and with ibrutinib? FCR has better numbers, admittedly at a much higher cost.
Does it really matter that a low level of disease is hanging around? Maybe not? Only time will tell.
Still I am glad to see such strong results with another very active tyrosine kinase inhibitor.
The more potent yet gentle treatment options the better.
The future is looking brighter and brighter for those of us with CLL.
Remember this is a press release from the maker of the drug, so please take a critical look at what Gilead had to say about their promising new agent and send me your comments on what you like and what gives you pause: