Accomplishments—Recent Progress: 1. Using mouse models, successfully attacked GIST with antibodies, essentially telling immune system to eat the cancer cells.
Muscle cramps and pain can occur during cancer treatment, and it is a common side effect of Gleevec. Treatment with Gleevec can cause a reduction in levels of calcium and magnesium in the blood. [...]
Our first Chicago GIST Day of Learning (GDOL) was a huge success! Over 50 GISTers and their families gathered for a great day of learning, and sharing experiences. It was wonderful to get to meet so many new people and reconnect with old friends.
Carrie Broussard gave birth to a healthy baby boy on May 1, after finding out she was pregnant in the midst of treatment with Gleevec. She named him Caelum, which in the Celtic origin means ‘brave warrior’ and in the Australian origin means ‘a gift.”
Dan Vaella was instrumental in getting Gleevec to market. After 25 years at Novartis and Sandoz, he has chosen to step down as Chairman.
A recent study at Stanford University School of Medicine shows that an antibody slows GIST growth. The study shows that the antibody binds itself to the surface of a GIST Tumor and causes the growth of cancer cells to slow in the mice they tested.
Since we have gotten a number of questions about Gleevec (imatinib) plasma levels and testing, I think it’s time to revisit the subject, especially for newer members. Since this is a very complex subject, this may take a few emails and a few days.
For 10 years Gleevec (at 600 mg) had been controlling his GIST, but Bob was struggling with the day-to-day side-effects of Gleevec. Most troubling were the muscle cramps, especially in the arms, that made it difficult to function effectively. Aching in the bones was also a problem; dealing with the side-effects of Gleevec had become a daily battle. Despite being treated at one of the best GIST centers in the country and despite taking supplements, such as calcium, the side-effects continued.
Results of the Scandinavian Sarcoma Group (SSG 18) adjuvant imatinib (Gleevec/Glivec) trial in high risk GIST were presented on June 5, during the Plenary Session of the 2011 American Society of Clinical Oncology conference (ASCO). The Plenary or “all members’ session” highlights “abstracts deemed to have the highest merit and greatest impact on oncology research and practice”.
Why was there such a fuss about Gleevec? After all, other breakthrough drugs have surfaced over the years, but none received the massive media attention this drug did; an American cabinet member had never called [...]