Better Outcomes from Autologous Transplants than Rituxan in Follicular Lymphoma


Autologous stem cell transplantation is linked to better survival outcomes in patients with follicular non-Hodgkin's lymphoma than any regimens featuring the monoclonal antibody Rituxan, according to findings from a multicenter study conducted chiefly by researchers from the British Columbia Cancer Agency.

Investigators sought to determine which transplant type (autologous or allogeneic) was best for patients diagnosed with transformed follicular non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, as well as whether either transplant type improved outcomes compared to Rituxan-based chemotherapy regimens.

In the study, the primary endpoint was Overall Survival (OS). There were three cohorts:

  1. Patients receiving an autologous stem cell transplantation (97 patients)
  2. Patients receiving an allogeneic stem cell transplantation (22 patients)
  3. Patients treated with rituximab regimens (53 patients)

The five-year overall survival rate, respectively, was found to be:

  1. 65 percent
  2. 46 percent
  3. 61 percent

The five-year progression-free survival rates were:

  1. 55 percent
  2. 46 percent
  3. 40 percent

Not surprisingly since the latter involves a host of additional potential problems, the five-year transplantation-related mortality rate was just five percent in the autologous cohort and 23 percent in the allogeneic group.

The team's findings have been published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

Source: JCO

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