FDA approves rare blood cancer drug

Thursday, August 17, 2017 - 12:00

According to Reuters, the US Food and Drug Administration has approved a rare blood cancer drug called Besponsa.

The drug was produced by big pharma company Pfizer Inc. Besponsa will be used to treat adults with relapsed or refractory B-cell acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (ALL).

This type of cancer causes bone marrow to produce too many B-Cell lymphocytes, an immature white blood cell.

Besponsa is a targeted therapy that binds to B-cell ALL cancer cells that expresses the CD22 antigen, blocking the growth of cancer cells.

However, patients who take Bespona are at risk for severe liver damage, including blocking of veins in the liver, as well as increased risk of death for those who take Besponsa after receiving a certain type of stem cell transplant.