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How does Venclexta work?

Answers (1)

Official Answer by 5 May 2016

Venclexta (venetoclax) was FDA-approved in April 2016.

Venclexta, by AbbVie, is an oral B-cell lymphoma-2 (BCL-2) inhibitor for chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) with 17p deletion. The 17p deletion is a chromosomal abnormality detected with a FDA-approved diagnostic test. The CLL cancer cell growth is fed by the BCL-2 protein, but Venclexta inhibits this protein.

In one study, 106 patients took increasing doses of the Venclexta pill once a day for five weeks. Results showed that 80% of patients either saw improvement or their cancer fully disappear.

Common side effects included low red and white blood cell count, diarrhea, nausea, and respiratory (lung) infections.

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