New drug for CLL approved (April 2016)

Venetoclax was recently approved for treatment of a specific subtype of aggressive chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL). The drug targets a particular protein in cancer cells, BCL2, which helps cancer cells avoid being killed and is overexpressed in CLL cells. It is an oral drug that has been shown to be very effective in CLL patients with an aggressive 17p deletion mutation in the leukemia cells. In studies of patients with 17p mutation who had relapsed after prior therapy, 80% of patients responded to the drug. Dosing and renal function must be closely monitored during initiation of the drug through our clinic.
Read more about Venetoclax here.