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BioLineRx's blood cancer combo improves survival in midstage study

BioLineRx Ltd. said a combination of its cancer drug BL-8040 and a chemotherapy drug cytarabine improved the survival of patients with a certain type of blood cancer in a midstage clinical trial.

The phase 2a study, conducted in 42 patients with acute myeloid leukemia that had returned or was unresponsive to treatment, evaluated varying doses of BL-8040 in combination with a high dose of cytarabine.

Acute myeloid leukemia is a type of cancer in which the bone marrow produces abnormal white blood cells called myeloblasts, red blood cells or platelets.

BioLineRx said new data from the trial showed that across dose levels, patients on the combination therapy lived for a median of 9.1 months, compared to 6.1 months for cytarabine alone. Additionally, 29% of the patients experienced a reduction in their disease.

In the dose-expansion group, 23 patients were treated with BL-8040 in a 1.5-milligram dose; 39% had disease reduction and were alive for a median of 10.7 months. Within periods of a year, two years and three years, survival rates were at 38.1%, 23.8% and 23.8%, respectively.

For the dose-escalation group of 9 patients, the average survival period was 21.8 months. In periods of a year, two years and three years, survival rates were at 66.7%, 44.4% and 44.4%, respectively.

Israel-based BioLineRx presented the updated results at the 23rd Annual Congress of the European Hematology Association held in Stockholm.