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ASH 2023: A Fully Oral Medicine Combination for Frail AML Patients
Posted: Feb 20, 2024
ASH 2023: A Fully Oral Medicine Combination for Frail AML Patients image

AML specialist Dr. Tapan Kadia from MD Anderson Cancer Center shared research findings with HealthTree at the recent ASH 2023 conference. He discussed how a fully oral medicine combination of venetoclax (Venclexta) and a pill version of decitabine (ASTX727) is helping frail and elderly AML patients. Watch his interview below, or read the summary of his interview. 

Venetoclax + ASTX727

Dr. Kadia stated that the study was conducted by his colleague Dr. Alexandre Bazinet. It was based on medicines used in the VIALE-A study which included venetoclax and an HMA (hypomethylating agent) azacitidine. This time, however, the HMA was decitabine and it was given in the form of a pill called ASTX727 rather than being administered intravenously (IV). This means that both medicines used in the study were able to be taken by mouth. 

The patients in the study were newly diagnosed AML patients over the age of 75 or those deemed too frail for standard intensive chemotherapy. 

The results showed:

  • 67% of patients achieved remission (partial or full reduction of AML signs/symptoms). 
  • The therapy extended patients' lives on average an additional 12.6 months since the start of treatment. 

Dr. Kadia stated that these results are noteworthy, considering the patient group’s age, high-risk types of AML, and that 40% of the patients had previously received HMAs for myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS) before their AML diagnosis (a group known for typically low response rates and survival outcomes of only 5-6 months).  

Learn more about the study by clicking here. If you would like to enroll in the study, click on “begin now,” and HealthTree’s patient navigator team will help you with the enrollment process.

How Can an Oral AML Treatment Like Venetoclax + ASTX727 Help Me? 

The advancement of administering an HMA in pill form is a large step in AML care. This update allows treatment to be administered to AML patients in an outpatient setting instead of an inpatient setting. Outpatient means that patients are treated at the center and then go home. Inpatient means that patients stay in the hospital overnight, potentially for a long duration of time. 

These findings can also benefit AML patients because they show how medicines administered in clinical trials are helping improve remission rates and times for patients who have a poor prognosis. 

In conclusion, the research Dr. Kadia presented shows how specialists and patients are collaborating to help improve care options for the AML patient community. We look forward to continued advances in treatment options for AML patients. 

To learn more about ASTX727, you can listen to a HealthTree podcast episode from 2021 by clicking here. Medical advancements with the use of ASTX727 have progressed since then. 

Interested in Accelerating Research? Join HealthTree Cure Hub!

Are you interested in accelerating research toward a cure for AML? We have created a powerful patient data portal named HealthTree Cure Hub for this very purpose. We invite you to join the 12,000-and-counting blood cancer patients who are collaborating with specialists through research surveys and studies in HealthTree Cure Hub. YOU are the key to improving AML care. We are grateful for your time and support in helping us progress toward an AML cure. Create your free HealthTree Cure Hub account by visiting the link below!


The author Megan Heaps

about the author
Megan Heaps

Megan joined HealthTree in 2022. As a writer and the daughter of a blood cancer patient, she is dedicated to helping patients and their caregivers understand the various aspects of their disease. This understanding enables them to better advocate for themselves and improve their treatment outcomes. In her spare time, she enjoys spending time with her family, sewing, and cooking.

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