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Current and Future Management Options for Myelodysplastic Syndromes


The management of the myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS) requires insight into the complex biology of the disease. Despite this challenge, two recent developments have contributed significantly to advancements in the treatment of MDS: (i) improvements in classification systems and prognostic models; and (ii) the emergence of US FDA-approved agents such as lenalidomide, azacitidine and decitabine. Prior to these developments, supportive care measures consisting of blood and platelet transfusions, haematopoietic growth factors and antimicrobials remained standard of care for the treatment of MDS. As a result of these developments, clinicians are able to provide patient-tailored therapy for specific MDS subgroups. Clinical trials addressing combination therapies with multiple investigational agents as well as novel combination regimens are ongoing. This review focuses on supportive care modalities, the approved agents indicated for the treatment of MDS and future directions for the treatment of MDS, including agents under clinical investigation.

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No sources of funding were used to assist in the preparation of this review. Dr Jabbour reports receiving honoraria from Bristol-Myers Squibb and Novartis, Dr Issa reports receiving grants from Eisai, Celgene and Merck, and Dr Kantarjian reports receiving grants from Bristol-Myers Squibb and Novartis. The other authors have no conflicts of interest that are directly relevant to the content of this review.

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Bryan, J., Jabbour, E., Prescott, H. et al. Current and Future Management Options for Myelodysplastic Syndromes. Drugs 70, 1381–1394 (2010).

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  • Lenalidomide
  • Darbepoetin Alfa
  • Decitabine
  • Good Supportive Care
  • Deferasirox