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Option for hard to treat leukaemia in adults

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A new treatment has been launched for chronic myeloid leukaemia.
Nilotinib (Tasigna) has been approved to manage the minority of adult patients with chronic myeloid leukaemia who are intolerant or resistant to previous therapies, including imatinib.

The drug targets the abnormal enzyme (tyrosine kinase) responsible for the reproduction of CML cells more specifically than imatinib and works on fewer pathways than other tyrosine kinase inhibitors, minimising the amount of potential side effects that can be experienced, according to manufacturer Novartis.

Janet Hayden, myeloid clinical nurse specialist from Kings College Hospital, London, said: ‘In my clinic I’ve often seen the impact of this terrible disease on patients and their families and how distressing it is when there are no further treatment options we can offer. I’ve seen a number of patients do really well on nilotinib, leading to active and fulfilling lives.’
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