CLL Support Association
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Are you biologically young enough for FCR?

Are you biologically young enough for FCR?

Wondering if you are biologically young and fit enough to tolerate say FCR (Fludarabine, Cyclophosphamide Rituximab), or whether a gentler treatment protocol such as BR (Bendamustine Rituximab) would suit you better? One interesting area of medical research is into designing a 'simple' blood test to report a patient's biological age. The hope is that genomic diagnostics on a patient's blood can be used to identify individualized treatment strategies for many prevalent diseases of older age and predict future health risks that will help guide targeted preventative measures.

A paper just published in Genome Biology, undertaken by King's College London, the Karolinska Institutet in Sweden, and Duke University in the US, assessed the value of RNA profiling tests for muscle, brain, and skin to derive a 'biological age' estimate. While the focus was on cognitive health with particular focus on Alzheimer’s disease (AD in the paper), this technique could be extended to assisting specialists with the best treatment choice for cancers, such as CLL.

From the Genome Biology Paper:


Diagnostics of the human ageing process may help predict future healthcare needs or guide preventative measures for tackling diseases of older age. We take a transcriptomics approach to build the first reproducible multi-tissue RNA expression signature by gene-chip profiling tissue from sedentary normal subjects who reached 65 years of age in good health.


We identify a novel and statistically robust multi-tissue RNA signature of human healthy ageing that can act as a diagnostic of future health, using only a peripheral blood sample. This RNA signature has great potential to assist research aimed at finding treatments for and/or management of AD and other ageing-related conditions.

Easier to read overview in Gizmag


Photo: You need to be pretty good with a welder to keep farm machinery in good working condition. Combine that with some artistic ability and you can get some unique letter boxes. This farmer just has to tell visitors trying to find the farm entrance "just drive along the road until you see the swaggie reading my mail". A swaggie (swagman) is what Aussies called an itinerant worker, who would bundle up his worldly belongings in his bedroll (known as his swag or matilda), which here is the farm mail box. Hence the well known Aussie song 'Waltzing Matilda'.

8 Replies

Funny I was just reading this on Auntie...

Funnier still I used have a GTAW all position ticket.... now I would be hard pressed to find one position and weld... 😁

Tube Turns


Hello everyone/ the youngest is here :),

I hope your summer was great.

I'd got good results from BR (Bendamustine Rituximab). The problem is that "B" makes serious cytopenias during the treatment. Blood transfusion and growth factor for insurance! After time may appear autoimmune anemia as like me- two already this year. But still better indicators for CLL. :)

I've never been to Fludara because I have variety of antibodies ;).Doctors replaced with 6 courses R-CM. Metotreksan instead Fludara ... No one is Younger enough for this preparation...

Now I'm supportive corticosteroid's terapia- gradually decreasing...till 8/10/2015.

Good luck for those that start Bendamustine/ Rituximab. Attention-drink plenty of water during and after infusions! Good resting, I mean good sleep, good low-fat food...and plenty of water! No fizzy drinks, only one Beer :) I'm serious, the water is purified and Keeps Kidneys.

Best regards from me...Stay healthy and positive.



Good news Elena.

Best wishes


1 like

Best to you, Sue :)



You need to eat more!



I am eating like wolf..hahahha...2015-62kg. Picture is/was from Oct.2013- was 56kg with a splitomegalia. ;)

Neil is good, too...Best regards, Neil!


Another very important pollution- after a course of therapy B/R, be sure that you will appoint maintenance therapy. I made that mistake and a year later I had received an autoimmune anemia.

Everything is very individual! my friend with SLL was only on Bendamustin...She is doing 4 year after me CLL diagnosed.

Our hematological department are treated (B/R) many patients of different ages with CLL.

It's sad to share but I think we are in a first place in EU suffering from CLL.

Hope better days are coming! <3


Hi Neil I was 69 when i had FCR which left me with two nasty side effects, the longer lasting being neuropathic pain. but this might not be related to age just to individuals genes, chemistry etc.

I just love the photo and description it epitomises the Aussie outback nature and wry humour.

Thanks for all your info Neil

Sheila in Freo


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