First-line therapy of chronic myeloid leukemia – focus on dasatinib
Philip C Amrein
Hematology-Oncology, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, USA
Abstract: Dasatinib is a broad spectrum, ATP-competitive, tyrosine kinase inhibitor with low nM activity against Bcr-Abl, Src, and other tyrosine kinases. This activity has allowed dasatinib to emerge as one of the most effective agents in the treatment of chronic myeloid leukemia (CML), and dasatinib has become the third drug over the past 10 years to be FDA approved for first line therapy in this setting. This review consists of papers and reports that recount the recent dramatic progress that has been made in the understanding of CML on a molecular basis leading up to the new targeted therapies, especially the use of dasatinib. As with any drug, treatment with dasatinib has risks and side effects, especially pleural effusions and anti-platelet effects, as outlined in recently published studies. Of interest are the reports of alternative doses and schedules that may be able to circumvent some of these side effects without compromising the effectiveness of this drug. This review outlines the mode of action, pharmacology, effectiveness, and safety of dasatinib in the treatment of CML, and by comparing dasatinib directly with the other tyrosine kinase inhibitors effective in CML, it describes the place in therapy that dasatinib currently holds.
Keywords: dasatinib, CML, chronic myeloid leukemia
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