Alemtuzumab is a targeted therapy. It belongs to a group of cancer drugs known as monoclonal antibodies. It works by locking on to a protein found on the surface of a type of white blood cell. This triggers the body’s immune system to attack these blood cells and destroy them.
Alemtuzumab is used to treat a type of blood cancer called chronic lymphocytic leukaemia (CLL) . It can also be used to treat a rare type of leukaemia called prolymphocytic leukaemia (PLL). It is also sometimes given before a stem cell transplant to reduce the risk of graft versus host disease (GVHD). GVHD is when donor cells react against your own.
Alemtuzumab is only available when ordered by a haematologist for individual named patients. Some people may be given it as part of a clinical trial. Your haematologist can tell you if it is appropriate for you.
You will see a haematologist and a chemotherapy nurse or specialist nurse throughout your treatment with alemtuzumab. This is who we mean when we mention doctor or nurse in this information.