Rare Disease Report

Targeted Therapy for Castleman's Disease

AUGUST 05, 2014

Frits van Rhee, MD, PhD, MRCP, professor of medicine, Myeloma Institute for Research and Therapy, University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, discusses why Sylvant is an appropriate treatment for multicentric Castleman's disease.

Castleman's disease has many non-distinctive symptoms that make it difficult to properly diagnosis. Those symptoms are also linked to increased levels of interleukin-6 (IL-6). The recently approved Sylvant targets IL-6.

Castleman's disease is not a cancer but is a lymphoproliferative disorder involving an overgrowth (proliferation) of lymphatic cells. Castleman's disease affects the lymph nodes and may require treatment with surgery, chemotherapy and/or radiation therapy. Castleman's disease is also referred to as giant lymph node hyperplasia, or angiofollicular lymph node hyperplasia.

Sylvant is an IL-6 antagonist and recently approved for treating patients with multicentric Castleman’s disease who are HIV negative and HHV-8 negative. Sylvant was not studied in patients with multicentric Castleman’s disease who are HIV positive or HHV-8 positive because Sylvant did not bind to virally produced IL-6 in a nonclinical study.

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