The suite of marked anemia benefts that momelotinib has consistently conferred on myelofbrosis (MF) patients stem from its unique inhibitory activity on the BMP6/ACVR1/SMAD and IL-6/JAK/STAT3 pathways, resulting in decreased hepcidin (master iron regulator) expression, higher serum iron and hemoglobin levels, and restored erythropoiesis. Clinical data on momelotinib from the phase 2 and the two phase 3 SIMPLIFY trials consistently demonstrated high rates of sustained transfusion-independence. In a recent phase 2 translational study, 41% of the patients achieved transfusion independence for≥12 weeks. In the phase 3 trials SIMPLIFY-1 and SIMPLIFY-2, 17% more JAK inhibitornaïve patients and two-fold more JAK inhibitor-treated patients achieved or maintained transfusion independence with momelotinib versus ruxolitinib and best available therapy (89% ruxolitinib), respectively. Anemia is present in approximately a third of MF patients at diagnosis, eventually developing in nearly all patients. The need for red blood cell transfusions is an independent adverse risk factor for both overall survival and leukemic transformation. Presently, FDA-approved medications to address anemia are lacking. Momelotinib is one of the prime candidates to durably address the critical unmet needs of MF patients with moderate/severe anemia. Importantly, momelotinib may have overall survival benefts in frontline and second-line MF patients. MOMENTUM is an international registration-track phase 3 trial further assessing momelotinib’s unique constellation of anemia and other benefts in second-line MF patients; the results of the MOMENTUM trial are keenly awaited and may lead to regulatory approval of momelotinib may lead to its approval.
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