Marian Update (CAL-101 - Completion of Cycle Six)

Marian saw Dr. Flinn today for her regular appt., labs and ct scan results. (She had scans yesterday.) She has completed six 28-day cycles on CAL-101 (plus weekly Rituxan infusions for the first eight weeks).

Her scans and lab work were both extremely good. Lymph nodes are all down. Blood counts in normal range. Her WBC is 8.5, ALC of 6, platelets are 226, HGB is 12.7 and HCT is 39.3%. These are great numbers.

The only surprise today is that Marian will have to have another Bone Marrow Biopsy tomorrow. We were not expecting that. But the pharmaceutical company has added the BMB to this study (at the end of six cycles) for patients who had substantial bone marrow involvement at the beginning of treatment. They want to know if the marrow is responding as well as the blood and lymph nodes are. You may remember that her marrow was 90% infiltrated with CLL cells prior to treatment with CAL-101. I'm sure that percentage has been reduced, but the only way to know how much is to do another biopsy.

I hate that she has to have another BMB, but she has been curious about her marrow's response and once the results are in, she'll know. It will be very encouraging if CAL-101 has impacted her marrow as effectively as it has her blood and lymph nodes. But actually any improvement will be positive and encouraging.

So we will be back at Sarah Cannon tomorrow for the procedure. She did really well with the first one and hopefully she will have the same good experience tomorrow. I will update my blog with the results once we get them.