Novel therapeutics approaches to chronic lymphocytic leukemia based on recent biological insights

Discov Med. 2009 Oct;8(42):157-64.


Chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) is a malignancy mainly affecting elderly people and is still considered an incurable disease. Despite recent advances in CLL treatment, relapse rates are high and often accompanied by the development of resistance towards conventional chemotherapy. Thus, new agents are needed for the treatment of these patients. In recent years, our understanding of the biological mechanisms driving CLL pathogenesis has considerably improved, and novel treatment strategies are arising. This review summarizes recent insights in CLL biology and describes several new agents and treatment strategies that are currently explored in pre-clinical studies and early-phase clinical trials.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Antineoplastic Agents / therapeutic use
  • Apoptosis / genetics
  • Apoptosis / physiology
  • Humans
  • Leukemia, Lymphocytic, Chronic, B-Cell / drug therapy*
  • Leukemia, Lymphocytic, Chronic, B-Cell / metabolism*
  • Receptors, Antigen, B-Cell / metabolism
  • Signal Transduction / drug effects
  • Signal Transduction / genetics
  • Signal Transduction / physiology


  • Antineoplastic Agents
  • Receptors, Antigen, B-Cell