WHITE PLAINS, N.Y., June 27, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS) was deeply saddened to learn of the death of the supremely talented Nora Ephron, from acute myelogenous leukemia (AML).
Ephron had been battling myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS), which then progressed to AML.
MDS is a group of diseases of the blood and bone marrow, with varying degrees of severity. Sometimes MDS can develop as a result of treatment for a different cancer. MDS is often a precursor to AML, a rapidly progressing blood cancer that results from acquired changes in the DNA of a developing marrow cell.
LLS is currently funding a Phase III trial for a promising new drug, rigorsertib (trade name Estybon®) being developed by Onconova Therapeutics Inc with support from LLS's Therapy Acceleration Program. The drug inhibits multiple molecular processes critical in the growth and survival of cancer cells. Encouraging earlier stage trials showed disease reduction in MDS patients who did not benefit from other therapies, and reduced need for red blood cell transfusions. The goal of the Onconova project is to develop a treatment for MDS so the disease does not progress to AML. Both the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the European Medicines Agency have recognized this drug could fill an unmet need for MDS patients.
"Our thoughts are with Ms. Ephron's family," said LLS President and CEO John Walter. "LLS is relentless in its pursuit of new therapies to defeat these diseases."
To learn more about MDS and AML, or to support research, visit www.lls.org or contact LLS's Information Resource Center at (800) 955-4572.
About The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society
The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society® (LLS) is the world's largest voluntary health agency dedicated to blood cancer. The LLS mission: Cure leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin's disease and myeloma, and improve the quality of life of patients and their families. LLS funds lifesaving blood cancer research around the world and provides free information and support services.
Founded in 1949 and headquartered in White Plains, NY, LLS has chapters throughout the United States and Canada. To learn more, visit www.LLS.org or contact the Information Resource Center at (800) 955-4572, Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. ET. www.lls.org.
SOURCE The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society