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Leukemia
Immunotherapy

Combination Ficlatuzumab and Cytarabine Show Clinical Activity in Relapsed/Refractory Acute Myeloid Leukemia

Despite advances in the treatment of acute myeloid leukemia (AML), only 29.5% of patients with the cancer are alive 5 years after diagnosis. Even with aggressive therapy, just 30% of patients achieve a complete remission with a median survival of 7.5 months, making it imperative to develop novel...

Leukemia

Calaspargase Pegol vs Pegaspargase in Pediatric ALL

In a phase III trial (DFCI 11-001) reported in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Vrooman et al found that the novel pegylated asparaginase formulation calaspargase pegol (calaspargase) given every 3 weeks was associated with similar serum asparaginase activity nadir values, survival outcomes, and...

Leukemia

Being Both a Cancer Provider and a Cancer Survivor Is a Rare Privilege

Perhaps my 35-year career as a surgical oncologist and researcher specializing in soft-tissue sarcomas should have prepared me to recognize the signs of chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) when they first appeared a few days before Christmas in 2016, but it did not. In fact, my symptoms were so...

Leukemia

Expert Point of View: Jacqueline C. Barrientos, MD

The invited discussant of the phase I trial of lisaftoclax (APG-2575), Jacqueline C. Barrientos, MD, of Hofstra/Northwell, Great Neck, New York, commented on the positive findings: “The 15 patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia [CLL] had an objective response rate of 80% and a median time to...

Leukemia

Novel BCL2 Inhibitor Shows Activity in CLL in Phase I Trial

The novel, selective BCL2 inhibitor lisaftoclax (APG-2575) has shown activity in the treatment of relapsed or refractory chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) in a phase I study reported at the 2021 ASCO Annual Meeting.1 Preliminary data suggest that lisaftoclax stands out for its favorable safety...

Leukemia
Lymphoma

Expert Point of View: Jacqueline C. Barrientos, MD, MS

Invited discussant Jacqueline C. Barrientos, MD, MS, of Northwell Health Cancer Institute, Zucker School of Medicine at Hofstra/Northwell in Great Neck, New York, noted that, although both ibrutinib and venetoclax have shown superior results to chemotherapy, each drug is associated with toxicity....

Lymphoma
Leukemia

Fixed-Dose, First-Line Ibrutinib/Venetoclax Combination Achieves Durable Remissions in CLL

The combination of fixed-duration, first-line treatment with ibrutinib plus venetoclax achieved complete responses in more than half of patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL)/small lymphocytic leukemia (SLL), based on the primary analysis of the fixed-dose cohort of the phase II CAPTIVATE ...

Leukemia

Arsenic Plus All-Trans Retinoic Acid for Pediatric Patients With Acute Promyelocytic Leukemia

In a Chinese study (CCLG-APL2016) reported in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Zheng et al found that the combination of arsenic with all-trans retinoic acid (ATRA) was associated with good survival outcomes in pediatric patients with acute promyelocytic leukemia. Study Details The multicenter...

Leukemia
Immunotherapy

Humanized CD19-Targeted CAR T-Cell Treatment in Patients With Relapsed or Refractory B-Cell ALL

In a pilot study reported by Myers et al in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, a humanized CD19-targeted chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T-cell product developed by the investigators (huCART19) was found to produce durable remissions and prolonged CAR T-cell persistence in CAR-naive and CAR-exposed...

Leukemia

Effect of Myeloid Progenitor Cell Product on the Risk of Infection During Induction Chemotherapy for AML

In a phase II trial reported in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Desai et al found that the addition of the myeloid progenitor cell product romyelocel-L to granulocyte colony-stimulating factor (G-CSF) reduced the incidence of infection and antimicrobial use vs G-CSF alone during induction...

Leukemia

Lessons From Pneumococcal Vaccine Responses in Patients With CLL in an Evolving Vaccine Landscape

The role of vaccines in mitigating the significant morbidity and mortality associated with infections in chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) is a developing field of study, punctuated by the advent of novel therapeutic agents and pressing questions regarding the global SARS–CoV-2 vaccination...

Leukemia

Low Response Rates to Conjugate Pneumococcal Vaccine in Patients With Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia

In an Italian study reported in Leukemia, Francesca Romana Mauro, MD, of the Department of Translational and Precision Medicine, Sapienza University, Rome, and colleagues found that only a small minority of patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) developed an adequate immune response to...

multiple myeloma
leukemia

Martin Kaiser, MD, on Myeloma and Plasma Cell Leukemia: Transplantation Plus Daratumumab/CVRD Therapy

Martin Kaiser, MD, of The Institute of Cancer Research and Royal Marsden Hospital, discusses findings from the UK OPTIMUM/MUKNINE trial on the depth of response and minimal residual disease status in patients with ultra-high–risk newly diagnosed multiple myeloma and plasma cell leukemia who were treated with augmented autologous transplant and daratumumab plus cyclophosphamide, bortezomib, lenalidomide, and dexamethasone (Abstract S181).

leukemia
immunotherapy

Bijal D. Shah, MD, on CLL: CAR T-Cell Therapy With Brexucabtagene Autoleucel

Bijal D. Shah, MD, of the H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center, discusses phase II results of the ZUMA-3 study, which evaluated brexucabtagene autoleucel (KTE-X19), an anti-CD19 CAR T-cell therapy, in adults with relapsed or refractory B-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (Abstract 7002).

leukemia
lymphoma

Paolo Ghia, MD, PhD, on CLL/SLL and Ibrutinib Plus Venetoclax: A Primary Analysis of the CAPTIVATE Trial

Paolo Ghia, MD, PhD, of the Università Vita-Salute San Raffaele, discusses phase II results from the CAPTIVATE study, which examined ibrutinib plus venetoclax as a fixed-duration first-line treatment in patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia/small lymphocytic lymphoma (Abstract 7501).

Leukemia
Immunotherapy

Brexucabtagene Autoleucel in Adults With Relapsed or Refractory B-Cell ALL: ZUMA-3

As reported in The Lancet by Shah et al, the pivotal phase II ZUMA-3 trial has shown a high rate of complete remission with the autologous anti-CD19 chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T-cell therapy brexucabtagene autoleucel (formerly KTE-X19) in adults with relapsed or refractory B-cell acute...

Issues in Oncology
Lymphoma
Leukemia
Kidney Cancer
CNS Cancers

Study Explores Incidence Rates for Various Pediatric Cancers Across Age and Racial Groups

New research has uncovered substantial differences in the rates of childhood cancers when considering a single year of age rather than grouping several years together. The study, published by Marcotte et al in the journal Cancer, also found that minority children seem to have different risks than...

Leukemia
Lymphoma

Ibrutinib/Venetoclax vs Chlorambucil/Obinutuzumab in Previously Untreated Older Patients With CLL/SLL

In a primary analysis of the phase III GLOW study, a once-daily, all-oral, fixed-duration dose of ibrutinib and venetoclax for chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL)/small lymphocytic lymphoma (SLL) resulted in superior progression-free survival than treatment with chlorambucil and obinutuzumab. Arnon...

leukemia

Arnon P. Kater, MD, PhD, on CLL: Fixed-Duration Ibrutinib and Venetoclax vs Chlorambucil Plus Obinutuzumab

Arnon P. Kater, MD, PhD, of the University of Amsterdam, discusses a primary analysis of the phase III GLOW study, which, for the first time, compared the efficacy and safety of fixed-duration ibrutinib plus venetoclax with chlorambucil plus obinutuzumab for first-line treatment of older patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia (LB1902).

leukemia

Keith W. Pratz, MD, on AML: Venetoclax, Azacitidine, and Disease Response

Keith W. Pratz, MD, of the University of Pennsylvania, discusses the outcomes of patients with acute myeloid leukemia who took part in the VIALE-A trial and were treated with venetoclax and azacitidine. The patients had achieved both composite complete remission and measurable residual disease of < 10-3 (Abstract S137).

Leukemia
Lymphoma

Zanubrutinib vs Ibrutinib in Relapsed/Refractory CLL/SLL: ALPINE Trial

Zanubrutinib—a second-generation Bruton's tyrosine kinase (BTK) inhibitor—significantly improved response rates and delayed disease progression as compared to the standard of care, ibrutinib, in patients with relapsed or refractory chronic lymphocytic leukemia or small lymphocytic lymphoma...

Leukemia
Genomics/Genetics

Addition of Gemtuzumab Ozogamicin to Conventional Background Chemotherapy in Pediatric Patients With KMT2A-Rearranged AML

As reported in the Journal of Clinical Oncology by Pollard et al, a subgroup of pediatric patients with KMT2A-rearranged acute myeloid leukemia (AML) in the phase III Children’s Oncology Group AAML0531 trial had improved outcomes with the addition of the CD33-targeting agent gemtuzumab ozogamicin...

leukemia
immunotherapy

Nicholas J. Short, MD, on ALL: Ponatinib Plus Blinatumomab May Help Patients Avoid Transplants

Nicholas J. Short, MD, of The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, discusses early results from a phase II study which showed that combining ponatinib and blinatumomab in patients with Philadelphia chromosome–positive acute lymphoblastic leukemia may prove to be an effective chemotherapy-free regimen that might reduce the need for allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplant (Abstract 7001).

Leukemia

Venetoclax Plus FLAG-IDA Induction and Consolidation for AML

In a single-institution phase I/II study reported in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Courtney D. DiNardo, MD, and colleagues found that the combination of venetoclax with FLAG-IDA (fludarabine, cytarabine, granulocyte colony-stimulating factor, and idarubicin) in induction and consolidation...

Leukemia

Ibrutinib/Venetoclax Provides Durable Remission for Patients With Newly Diagnosed CLL

The combination of ibrutinib and venetoclax was found to provide lasting disease remission in patients with newly diagnosed chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL). Findings from a single-institution phase II study were published by Nitin Jain, MD, and colleagues in JAMA Oncology and provide the longest ...

Leukemia

Update on Clinical Trials in Acute Myeloid Leukemia

To complement The ASCO Post’s continued comprehensive coverage of the 2020 American Society of Hematology (ASH) Annual Meeting &amp; Exposition, here are several abstracts selected from the meeting proceedings focusing on acute myeloid leukemia (AML), such as the use of venetoclax added to...

Leukemia
Immunotherapy

Ponatinib/Blinatumomab Demonstrates High Rates of Complete Molecular Response in Philadelphia Chromosome–Positive ALL

The combination of ponatinib and blinatumomab was found to be safe and highly effective in patients with newly diagnosed or relapsed/refractory Philadelphia chromosome–positive acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL). The study—presented by Nicholas J. Short, MD, and colleagues during the 2021 ASCO...

Leukemia
Prostate Cancer

Cancer Has Taught Me to Live With Purpose

I have had two life-threatening cancers over the past 3 decades and can say without equivocation that there is never a good time to get cancer. My first cancer diagnosis happened in 1992, just weeks after I had accepted the position of Chief Executive Officer of Hughes Electronics. The job meant a...

Leukemia

Oral Azacitidine Improves Overall Survival vs Placebo as Maintenance Therapy for AML in First Remission

As reported in The New England Journal of Medicine by Andrew H. Wei, MB, BS, PhD, of the Australian Centre for Blood Diseases, Monash University, Melbourne, and colleagues, the phase III QUAZAR AML-001 trial has shown prolonged overall survival with oral azacitidine maintenance therapy vs placebo...

Leukemia

How MRD Assessment May Help Guide Treatment Selection for Patients With AML

Complete morphologic remission is considered the first requirement for achieving long-term, leukemia-free survival and a potential cure in patients with acute leukemia, including acute myeloid leukemia (AML), and is the goal of all therapeutic strategies to date. Recognizing that the majority of...

Leukemia

Acute Myeloid Leukemia World Awareness Day 2021: April 21

After a great response to Acute Myeloid Leukemia World Awareness Day (AML WAD) in 2020, Know AML looks forward to commemorating AML WAD in 2021. AML WAD will take place on April 21, 2021, with the aim to facilitate and improve knowledge of AML worldwide through collaborative participation. Know AML ...

Leukemia
Multiple Myeloma
COVID-19

Recent Studies Explore Efficacy of COVID-19 Vaccination in Patients With Leukemia and Myeloma

Two new studies published in the journal Blood suggest that the BNT162b2 mRNA COVID-19 vaccine may have reduced efficacy in individuals with chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) and multiple myeloma. According to researchers, these studies could help inform the ideal time for vaccination of these...

Leukemia
Genomics/Genetics

Certain Genetic Mutations May Increase Risk of Death From Infection in Patients With CLL

Death from infection—the leading cause of death for patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL)—may be linked to specific gene mutations, according to results from a study published by Else et al in the journal Leukemia. Testing for these mutations could be used to identify patients at a...

Leukemia

RARA Agonist Plus Azacitidine Shows Encouraging Activity in Relapsed/Refractory AML

The novel agentSY-1425 combined with azacitidine appears to be active in retinoic acid receptor alpha (RARA) superenhancer–positive newly diagnosed and relapsed or refractory acute myeloid leukemia (AML), according to the results of a phase II trial presented at the 2020 American Society of...

Leukemia
Immunotherapy

Long-Term Follow-up of Children and Young Adults With B-Cell ALL Treated With CD19 CAR T-Cell Therapy

In a long-term follow-up of a National Cancer Institute (NCI) phase I trial reported in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Nirali N. Shah, MD, and colleagues found that autologous CD19 chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T-cell therapy followed by allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation can...

Leukemia

Risk of Leukemia in Pediatric Patients With Down Syndrome

In a recent study reported by Marlow et al in The Journal of Pediatrics, researchers assessed the risk of leukemia in children with Down syndrome. Their findings pointed to stronger-than-expected associations between Down syndrome and acute myeloid leukemia (AML). Down syndrome is one of the most...

leukemia
lymphoma

Jennifer R. Brown, MD, PhD, on Managing Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia/Small Lymphocytic Lymphoma

Jennifer R. Brown, MD, PhD, of Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, discusses treatment choices for patients with relapsed or refractory CLL/SLL, when to stop therapy due to adverse events, BTK inhibitors and their second-generation counterparts, the need for ways to manage disease progression on novel drugs, and minimal residual disease as a predictor of response.

Leukemia

Diet and Exercise Intervention May Increase Efficacy of Chemotherapy in Pediatric Patients With Leukemia

Research published by Orgel et al in the journal Blood Advances showed that restricting calories, reducing fat and sugar intake, and increasing physical activity may boost the effectiveness of chemotherapy for older children and adolescents with leukemia. This intervention, which improved...

Leukemia

Addition of Pegaspargase Intensification to Standard Low-Intensity Chemotherapy Backbone in Pediatric Low-Risk B-Cell ALL

In an analysis from the Children’s Oncology Group (COG) AALL0331 trial reported in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Mattano et al found that the addition of pegaspargase intensification did not improve the high rate of continuous complete remission achieved with a standard COG low-intensity...

leukemia

Alexander E. Perl, MD, on Acute Myeloid Leukemia: Treatment Updates

Alexander E. Perl, MD, of the Abramson Cancer Center at the University of Pennsylvania, discusses the major changes in 2021 to the NCCN Clinical Practice Guidelines in Oncology for managing acute myeloid leukemia, including venetoclax plus azacitidine, a new standard of care in patients ineligible for intensive induction; oral azacitidine maintenance in fit patients unable to complete intensive consolidation chemotherapy or proceed to transplant; and an increased focus on minimal residual disease status post-induction.

Leukemia

FDA Approves New Indication for Daunorubicin/Cytarabine: Secondary AML in Pediatric Patients

On March 30, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved a revised label for the combination of daunorubicin and cytarabine (Vyxeos) to include a new indication to treat newly diagnosed therapy-related acute myeloid leukemia (AML) or AML with myelodysplasia-related changes (AML-MRC) in...

Leukemia

Groundbreaking Cancer Researcher Brian J. Druker, MD, Shows No Signs of Slowing Down

For this installment of the Living a Full Life series, guest editor Jame Abraham, MD, spoke with physician-scientist Brian J. Druker, MD, Director of the Knight Cancer Institute at Oregon Health &amp; Science University, Portland. In 2009, Dr. Druker won the Lasker-DeBakey Clinical Medical Research ...

Hematologic Malignancies
Leukemia
Lymphoma

Noncovalent BTK Inhibitor Pirtobrutinib in Relapsed or Refractory B-Cell Malignancies

In the phase I/II BRUIN trial reported in The Lancet, Anthony R. Mato, MD, and colleagues found that the noncovalent Bruton’s tyrosine kinase (BTK) inhibitor pirtobrutinib produced durable responses in patients with relapsed or refractory B-cell malignancies, including those previously treated with ...

Leukemia
Myelodysplastic Syndromes
Genomics/Genetics

Whole-Genome Sequencing vs Cytogenetic Analysis in Myeloid Cancers

In a study reported in The New England Journal of Medicine, Duncavage et al found that whole-genome sequencing in patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) or myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS) provided rapid genomic profiling that improved diagnostic yield vs conventional cytogenetic analysis, as...

Leukemia

Study Identifies Factors That May Lower the Risk of CNS Relapse in Pediatric Patients With ALL

Starting chemotherapy several days before the first lumbar puncture for diagnosis and treatment of acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) may reduce the risk of central nervous system (CNS) relapse in children, according to a study published by Tang et al in the journal Blood. The research focused on...

Leukemia

Responses to Conjugate Pneumococcal Vaccine in Patients With Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia

In an Italian study reported in Leukemia, Mauro et al found that only a small minority of patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) developed an adequate immune response to pneumococcal vaccination, with response being more likely in patients who were younger, had previously untreated and...

Leukemia

Studies Provide Guidance on the Use of Blinatumomab in Pediatric Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia

Monotherapy with blinatumomab as consolidation therapy before allogeneic stem cell transplant appears to be the optimal treatment for children with high-risk first-relapse B-cell precursor acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL), according to an international phase III trial that compared this approach...

Leukemia
Myelodysplastic Syndromes
Genomics/Genetics

Eprenetapopt Plus Azacitidine in TP53-Mutated MDS and AML

In a Groupe Francophone des Myélodysplasies phase II study reported in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Cluzeau et al found that the combination of eprenetapopt and azacitidine produced high response rates in previously untreated patients with high-risk TP53-mutated myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS) ...

Leukemia

Preclinical Research Shows Activity of Fidaxomicin Combination Therapy in MLL-AML

A specific type of acute myeloid leukemia (AML) that contains a rearrangement in the MLL gene (also known as KMT2A) might be made more sensitive to chemotherapy using an antibiotic currently available to treat diarrhea, according to new research published by Zeisig et al in Science Translational...

Leukemia
Immunotherapy

Genome-Edited Donor-Derived Anti-CD19 CAR T-Cell Therapy Is Active in B-Cell Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia

Pooled results of two phase I studies, reported in The Lancet by Reuben Benjamin, MBBS, of the Department of Haematological Medicine, King’s College Hospital, London, and colleagues, indicate that the genome-edited donor-derived allogeneic anti-CD19 chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T-cell product...

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