Cancer News
OncoLink Cancer News - HealthDay


Gleevec Approval Widened to Include Rare Cancer

Wednesday, February 1, 2012 (Last Updated: 02/02/2012)

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 1 (HealthDay News) -- U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval for the Novartis drug Gleevec has been expanded to include adults who have had surgical removal of CD117-positive gastrointestinal stromal tumors (GIST), the agency said in a news release.

GIST is a rare cancer that forms in cells that line the walls of the gastrointestinal tract, including the stomach.

Gleevec, first approved in 2001 to treat Philadelphia chromosome positive chronic myeloid leukemia, has been sanctioned subsequently for a number of forms of GIST.

Gleevec's label will be updated to include clinical study results about CD117-positive GIST. The drug significantly increased patient survival when taken for 36 months, compared to the standard 12 months, the FDA said.

Common clinical side effects of Gleevec included swelling, nausea and vomiting, muscle cramps, bone or muscle pain, diarrhea, rash, fatigue, and abdominal pain.

Novartis is based in East Hanover, N.J.

More information

The U.S. National Institutes of Health has more about GIST.

Specialties Hematology & Oncology

Copyright © 2012 HealthDay. All rights reserved.


I Wish You Knew

The role of the chaplain in cancer care

View More



Blogs and Web Chats

OncoLink Blogs give our readers a chance to react to and comment on key cancer news topics and provides a forum for OncoLink Experts and readers to share opinions and learn from each other.




OncoLink OncoPilot

Facing a new cancer diagnosis or changing the course of your current treatment? Let our cancer nurses help you through!

Learn More