Watch these video interviews on the iPad edition of this issue, conducted by OT reporter Dan Keller:
* Heyu Ni, MD, PhD, a scientist at St. Michael's Hospital and the Canadian Blood Services and Associate Professor at the University of Toronto, discusses anfibatide, a novel glycoprotein Ib antagonist anticoagulant purified from snake venom, which in a clinical trial appeared to prevent platelet aggregation without affecting the blood or bleeding time (Abstract 577). Anfibatide may have advantages over current GpIIb/IIIa inhibitors, as well as applications in cancer-related thrombotic states, he said.
* Raymond S. Wong, MD, Specialist in Hematology and Consultant in the Department of Medicine at Prince of Wales Hospital of Chinese University of Hong Kong, discusses Castleman's disease, a potentially fatal, incurable disorder. The disease is thought to be driven in part by interleukin-6. In a Phase II trial (Abstract 504), use of siltuximab, a monoclonal antibody designed to block the activity of IL-6, was associated with durable tumor and symptom response in about one-third of patients, compared with no improvement among any of the patients treated with placebo and best supportive care. The rates of adverse events were similar between the two groups.
* Sung-Yun Pai, MD, Assistant Professor in the Department of Pediatrics at Boston Children's Hospital and Harvard Medical School, describes the use of somatic gene therapy for immune reconstitution of patients with X-linked severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID-X1) via a new vector that appears to have advantages over earlier approaches (Abstract 715). This is early work, and the study involved only nine patients, but she and other researchers at the meeting noted that there are implications for use in cancer patients for immune reconstitution.
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