Targeted Therapy

Ibrutinib (IMBRUVICA™)

Ibrutinib (IMBRUVICA®) is used to treat patients with active chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) who have not had prior therapy, including those with a deletion of the “TP53” gene (17p deletion). Ibrutinib is also used to treat patients with CLL who have received at least one prior therapy, including those with a deletion of the “TP53” gene (17p deletion).

Ibrutinib blocks a specific protein in the body that helps cancer cells live and grow.  This protein is called Bruton’s Tyrosine Kinase. By blocking this protein, ibrutinib may help kill and reduce the number of cancer cells and slow the spread of the cancer.

Side effects may include:

  • Diarrhea
  • Increase in the number of white blood cells
  • Bleeding, bruising
  • Major bleeding events have been reported
  • Viral, bacterial or fungal infections
  • Decrease in blood cell count
  • Muscle or joint aches
  • Headache, dizziness, weakness
  • Irregular heart rhythm

 

Idelalisib (ZYDELIG™)

Idelalisib (ZYDELIG™) is used in combination with rituximab to treat relapsed CLL. It blocks a specific protein in the body called PI3K. It affects the growth of cancerous white blood cells, causing them to die.

Side effects may include:

  • Liver damage
  • Severe diarrhea/colitis that can lead to death
  • Severe lung disorders that can lead to death
  • Abnormal blood test results
  • Diarrhea, nausea, vomiting
  • Stuffy nose, colds, sinus infection, bronchitis, cough
  • Skin reactions such as itchy rash, redness, blistering, peeling

Venetoclax (VENCLEXTA™)

Venetoclax (VENCLEXTA™) is used to treat patients with CLL who were previously treated for their cancer. It works by blocking a protein in the body called “BCL-2.” This is a protein that helps cancer cells survive. Blocking this protein helps to kill and lower the number of cancer cells.

Side effects may include:

  • Diarrhea
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Headache
  • Fatigue
  • Low levels of red or white blood cells
  • Pneumonia or upper respiratory tract infection
  • Tumour lysis syndrome (TLS)