ASH Burns Bright With Excitement

Clinical Drug

This opinion piece presents the opinions of the author. It does not necessarily reflect the views of BioSpace.

The American Society of Hematology annual meeting had lots of exciting data for clinicians and investors, particular for companies with "blue" in the name. bluebird bio surged on further evidence that its bb2121 CAR-T treatment could be a game-changer in multiple myeloma. Not only did 94% of patients respond, but it appears to be safer than the CD19 CAR-Ts. And Blueprint Medicines wowed the audience with its early-stage results on avapritinib in systemic mastocytosis, an abnormal and often deadly increase in mast cells. In phase 1, the company saw an overall response rate of 72%, and controlled disease in 100% of patients.

There's also more drama among the leaders in CAR-T, with both Gilead/Kite and Juno presenting new data. Investors have given this round to Kite, already well of Juno, on the basis of its strong complete response results in large B-cell lymphoma patients over a year after treatment. It's possible Juno still has the better drug in JCAR017, but we don't have the data yet.  -KT

Here's a roundup of these stories and other top clinical news from the past month.


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