The article gives some history on how Bendamustine was developed, how and why it works on lymphoma cells, how it might best be used, and what clinical trials have told us about its effectiveness.
In the article, you'll learn some fascinating tidbits, like:
- Bendamustine was developed in East Germany in the early 1960s, but wasn't widely used or known about in Western Europe and the U.S. until the early 1990s, after things opened up over there.
- It is related to the mustard has used in World War I.
- It is generally better tolerated and more effective than CHOP, especially when combined with Rituxan.
- It was named for Benedetto DaMustini, a young Italian immigrant who sold sausages from a small stand outside the East German hospital where it was developed. One night, after a long session of working on the compound, the lead researcher was about to give up on his efforts. He stopped for a sausage at the stand, and, refreshed by his snack, returned to work in the lab. A few hours later, he had his breakthrough. He went outside, thanked the boy for his sausage, asked the boy his name, and declared that he would name his new cancer treatment Bendamustine after young Benedetto DaMustini.
Anyway, the stuff that you actually learn from the article is pretty interesting on its own, particularly given how much more common Bendamustine is becoming as a treatment for Follicular Lymphoma. As I have mentioned before, Dr. R and I have talked about it as a possible next treatment for me, when it becomes necessary to have one, so I have a special interest in learning more about it.