Hemophilia is a genetic disease caused by a deficiency of one of the coagulation proteins. The term usually refers to either hemophilia A, factor VIII (FVIII), with an incidence of ∼1 in 5000 male births, or hemophilia B, factor IX (FIX), with an incidence of ∼1 in 30 000 male births. When severe, the disease leads to spontaneous life-threatening bleeding episodes. Current therapy requires frequent intravenous infusions of therapeutic factor concentrates. Most patients administer the infusions at home every few days and must limit their physical activities to avoid bleeding when the factor activity levels are below normal. In March 2014, a new therapeutic FIX preparation was approved for clinical use in Canada and the United States and, in June 2014, a new FVIII preparation was approved for clinical use in the United States. Over the next couple of years, other new factor products for FIX, FVIIa, and FVIII, which are currently in late stages of clinical trials, will likely also be approved. These new factors have been engineered to extend their half-life in circulation, thus providing major therapeutic advances for patients with hemophilia primarily by allowing treatment with fewer infusions per month. In the clinical trials so far, >500 patients have successfully used these extended half-life products regularly for >1 year to prevent spontaneous bleeding, to treat successfully any bleeding episodes, and to provide effective coagulation for major surgery. Essentially all infusions were well tolerated and effective. These promising new therapies should allow patients to use fewer infusions to maintain appropriate clotting factor activity levels in all clinical settings.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||9|
|Journal||Hematology / the Education Program of the American Society of Hematology. American Society of Hematology. Education Program|
|State||Published - Dec 5 2014|
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