Purpose: We investigated the efficacy and safety of administering high-dose rituximab (HD-R) in combination with high-dose carmustine, cytarabine, etoposide, and melphalan chemotherapy and autologous stem-cell transplantation (SCT) in patients with recurrent B-cell aggressive non-Hodgkin's lymphoma (NHL). Patients and Methods: Sixty-seven consecutive patients were treated. Rituximab was administered during stem-cell mobilization (1 day before chemotherapy at 375 mg/m2 and 7 days after chemotherapy at 1,000 mg/m2), together with granulocyte colony-stimulating factor 10 μg/kg and granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor 250 μg/m2 administered subcutaneously daily. HD-R of 1,000 mg/m2 was administered again days 1 and 8 after transplantation. The results of this treatment were retrospectively compared with those of a historical control group receiving the same preparative regimen without rituximab. Results: With a median follow-up time for the study group of 20 months, the overall survival rate at 2-years was 80% (95% CI, 65% to 89%) for the study group and 53% (95% CI, 34% to 69%) for the control group (P = .002). Disease-free survival was 67% (95% CI, 51% to 79%) for the study group and 43% (95% CI, 26% to 60%) for the control group (P = .004). The median time to recovery of absolute neutrophil count to ≥ 500 cells/μL was 11 days (range, 8 to 37 days) for the rituximab group and 10 days (range, 8 to 17 days) for the matched control group (P = .001). However, infections were not significantly increased in patients treated with rituximab. Conclusion: The results of this study suggest that using HD-R and autologous SCT is a feasible and promising treatment for patients with B-cell aggressive NHL.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cancer Research