Celgene’s Revlimid is now available in the UK for patients with newly-diagnosed myeloma.

Specifically, the drug can now be given to patients with the blood cancer who have not received any treatment and cannot have stem cell therapy, representing a real advance in the management of the disease.

The news will undoubtedly be welcomed by patients, given that current options are limited and clinical data show a regimen of Revlimid (lenalidomide) plus dexamethasone can significantly improve progression-free survival and overall survival rates. 

In the Phase III FIRST trial, continuous treatment until disease progression almost doubled the percentage of progression-free patients at three years versus a current standard of care, the firm noted, highlighting its potential.

“Revlimid is a tried and tested treatment in myeloma and it is very pleasing that there are now compelling data demonstrating its effectiveness in newly diagnosed myeloma patients not eligible for transplant,” said Eric Low, chief executive of the charity Myeloma UK.

“Ideally, effective treatments should be made available to patients as soon as possible after licensing and we will be working hard to make sure this happens across the UK”.