Claire Harrison, MD, DM, FRCP, FRCPath, of Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust, London, UK, discusses the pooled overall survival (OS) analysis of the 5-year data from the COMFORT-I and COMFORT-II trials of ruxolitinib for myelofibrosis treatment as well as the relationship between transfusion requirement and clinical outcomes of patients treated as part of the COMFORT trials. Both studies, COMFORT-I (NCT00952289) and COMFORT-II (NCT00934544), have completed their 5-year follow-up. The analysis of survival benefit from a pooled analysis of the studies, shows survival benefit for earlier treatment with ruxolitinib in patients with intermediate or high-risk myelofibrosis. Further, they looked at effects of ruxolitinib upon the need of the patient to have a blood transfusion; due to ruxolitinib’s effect on JAK/STAT signaling, it will produce anemia in patients with myelofibrosis and this can be a treatment limiting effect of the drug. They demonstrated that the need for blood transfusion reduced over time. Further, contrary to previous findings, it was found that some patients actually became transfusion-independent on ruxolitinib. Recorded at the 2016 American Society of Hematology (ASH) Annual Meeting, held in San Diego, CA.
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