Innovative Clinical Trial Taking on Acute Myeloid Leukemia

Mar 13, 2019 | Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML), AML, AML Master Clinical Trial, Leukemia

Acute Myeloid Leukemia

Launched in 2016 by The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS), the Beat AML Master Clinical Trial represents a groundbreaking collaborative trial targeting acute myeloid leukemia (AML). From humble beginnings in the 1940s New York to present day, the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society represents a nexus in the battle against blood cancers.  With more than $1.2 billion invested in cutting-edged blood cancer research, LLS continuously contributes to the most promising treatments.

LLS launched the AML Master Clinical Trial to combat what is a complex grouping of more than 10 different prominent subtypes of blood cancer, and many other rarer ones, which cause more than 10,000 deaths every year.  By leveraging LLS’ leadership and experience to organize an unique cooperation of top academic researchers, industry sponsors, genomics experts and government to organize, mobilize and harness resources to develop more effective treatments for AML patients.  By deploying targeted advanced genomic technology the cooperative seeks to better understand mutations in AML as well as identify targeted therapies to inhibit these mutations and ultimate more effectively treat this form of cancer.

26% of LLS’ budget goes to research. They have invested almost $100 million just in the past 5 years on AML research.   In 2009, LLS partnered with Celator Pharmaceuticals to advance CPX-351, a novel formulation of two known therapies. The combination therapy had outperformed standard therapy in a phase 3 clinical trial for patients with secondary AML—a high-risk subtype of the disease.  LLS seeks to convert his investment into the first new treatment for AML in 40 years.

The AML Master Clinical Trial is designed to facilitate approval of new drugs by regulatory agencies such as the FDA.  It seeks to change the treatment paradigm for AML—by introducing offering more individualized and the hope is effective treatments.  The team has developed a protocol that uses sophisticated genomic technology to identify the genetic drivers of patient’s AML to match them with the most appropriate therapy.  The initial findings from the continuous trial were recently presented at the 60th American Society of Hematology Annual Meeting. About 95% of the 268 trial participants were identified as candidates for targeted therapy within 7 days based on their personal genomic results. The trial has grown to the following research sites:

  • Huntsman Cancer Institute at University of Utah
  • Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
  • The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center
  • Knight Cancer Institute at Oregon Health and Science University
  • University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center
  • The University of Chicago Medicine Comprehensive Cancer Center
  • University of Maryland Marlene and Steward Greenbaum Comprehensive Cancer Center
  • Mayo Clinical (Phoenix, AZ; Jacksonville, FL; Rochester, MN)
  • UCLA Health
  • Winship Cancer Institute of Emory University
  • University of Pittsburgh Medical Center
  • University of Kansas Cancer Center


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