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The expanding role of venetoclax in chronic lymphocytic leukemia and small lymphocytic lymphoma

Authors
  • Schieber, Michael1
  • Ma, Shuo1
  • 1 Department of Medicine, Division of Hematology/Oncology, Feinberg School of Medicine, Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center, Northwestern University, Chicago, IL
Type
Published Article
Journal
Blood and Lymphatic Cancer: Targets and Therapy
Publisher
Dove
Publication Date
Mar 12, 2019
Volume
9
Pages
9–17
Identifiers
DOI: 10.2147/BLCTT.S177009
PMID: 32009829
PMCID: PMC6859801
Source
PubMed Central
Keywords
Disciplines
  • Review
License
Green

Abstract

The BCL-2 protein family members inhibit cellular apoptosis, and their overexpression represents a common survival adaption in cancer. Recently, a selective BCL-2 inhibitor ABT-199, venetoclax, has demonstrated remarkable activity in relapsed/refractory chronic lymphocytic leukemia/small lymphocytic lymphoma (CLL/SLL), both as a single agent and in combination with anti-CD20 immunotherapies, such as rituximab. In this article, we review the development and latest clinical data that have led to the expanded approval of venetoclax with rituximab in relapsed/refractory CLL/SLL. We also discuss ongoing and future clinical trials designed to evaluate the efficacy of venetoclax in previously untreated patients and to investigate venetoclax combinations with inhibitors of B-cell receptor signaling pathway. These studies hope to offer an expanded list of chemotherapy-free regimens for patients with CLL/SLL.

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