Rituximab (Rituxan and MabThera) is a chimeric monoclonal antibody against the protein CD20. It has been approved for the treatment of non-Hodgkin lymphomas, leukemias, refractory rheumatoid arthritis and to prevent rejection in kidney transplant recipients.
The UK’s National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) issued yesterday a guidance on the use of rituximab as first line treatment for chronic lymphocytic leukemia.
From the institute’s press release:
“The guidance recommends that rituximab should be considered as a possible first treatment for people with chronic lymphocytic leukemia who are able to take fludarabine in combination with cyclophosphamide.
Rituximab should only be used in combination with fludarabine and cyclophosphamide. Rituximab is not recommended in combination with any other cancer chemotherapy agents as a first treatment for chronic lymphocytic leukaemia.”