Novartis’ MM drug triumphs in Phase 3 study

In Clinical Development by Tim Peplow

Novartis’ experimental compound LBH589 (panobinostat) has impressed in a late stage clinical trial, fuelling hope that its novel mechanism of action will improve outcomes for multiple myeloma patients with limited treatment options.

When added to a background therapy of bortezomib and dexamethasone, panobinostat significantly extended progression-free survival in patients multiple myeloma compared to the two drugs given alone.

What’s particularly interesting about panobinostat is its mechanism of action. The drug works by blocking pan-deacetylase (pan-DAC), a key enzyme found in cancer cells. This leads to cellular stress and eventual death of the cell.

While panobinostat has the potential to be a first-in-class therapy for the treatment of MM, it would join the ranks of several new MM agents developed in the past few years. What do you think? Is the multiple myeloma market going to become too crowded?

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