Advanced Photon Source

An Office of Science National User Facility

A New Leukemia Drug

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This research used resources of the Advanced Photon Source, a U.S. Department of Energy Office of Science User Facility operated for the U.S. Department of Energy Office of Science by Argonne National Laboratory under Contract No. DE-AC02-06CH11357.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved a new leukemia drug from AbbVie Inc. of North Chicago, Illinois. The drug, to be marketed as Venclexta, is partially derived from proprietary research carried out at the Industrial Macromolecular Crystallography Association Center for Advancing Therapeutics x-ray beamline at the U.S. Department of Energy's Argonne Advanced Photon Source.

The FDA press release issued on April 11, 2016, notes that

"Venclexta is the first FDA-approved treatment that targets the B-cell lymphoma 2 (BCL-2) protein, which supports cancer cell growth and is overexpressed in many patients with CLL.

"According to the National Cancer Institute, CLL is one of the most common types of leukemia in adults, with approximately 15,000 new cases diagnosed each year. CLL is characterized by the progressive accumulation of abnormal lymphocytes, a type of white blood cell. Patients with CLL who have a 17p deletion lack a portion of the chromosome that acts to suppress cancer growth. This chromosomal abnormality occurs in approximately 10 percent of patients with untreated CLL and in approximately 20 percent of patients with relapsed CLL."

“ "These patients now have a new, targeted therapy that inhibits a protein involved in keeping tumor cells alive," ” said Richard Pazdur, director of the Office of Hematology and Oncology Products in the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research. “For certain patients with CLL who have not had favorable outcomes with other therapies, Venclexta may provide a new option for their specific condition.”

The entire FDA press release can be read here.

The Industrial Macromolecular Crystallography Association Center for Advancing Therapeutics beamline 17-ID is supported by the companies of the Industrial Macromolecular Crystallography Association through a contract with Hauptman-Woodward Medical Research Institute.

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The U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science is the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States and is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. For more information, visit the Office of Science website.

Published Date: 
04.12.2016