We investigated the safety, efficacy, and long-term outcomes of alemtuzumab and rituximab (AR) combination therapy in previously untreated patients with CLL. Thirty patients, ages 28-80 years, 47% older than 60 years, 90% Rai clinical stages II-IV, and 67% without favorable cytogenetics received AR. Based on the NCI-WG 1996 criteria, OR was 100%, with 60% CR. With CT scans OR was 70%, with 23% CR, 47% PR, and 30% SD. Sixty-seven percent of patients showed no evidence of MRD in the bone marrow by 6-color flow cytometry. Median PFS, TFS, and 5-year OS were 24.4, 50.7 months, and 80%, respectively. Grade 3/4 neutropenia and thrombocytopenia were reported in 30% and 7% of patients, respectively. CMV reactivation, asymptomatic in all but one patient, occurred in 8 patients. Immunotherapy with alemtuzumab and rituximab results in robust responses and long asymptomatic therapy-free intervals. It is well tolerated with infrequent, predictable, and easily managed complications.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cancer Research