The addition of rituximab to CHOP chemotherapy improves overall and failure-free survival for follicular grade 3 lymphoma

M. J. Overman, L. Feng, B. Pro, P. McLaughlin, M. Hess, F. Samaniego, A. Younes, J. E. Romaguera, F. B. Hagemeister, L. Kwak, F. Cabanillas, M. A. Rodriguez, L. E. Fayad*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Background: The benefit of adding rituximab to anthracycline-based therapy for follicular lymphoma grade 3 has not been studied. Patients and methods: We retrospectively reviewed the records of 45 patients with follicular grade 3 lymphoma who were treated with rituximab and the combination of cyclophosphamide, doxorubicin, vincristine, and prednisone (CHOP) at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. Response rate, failure-free survival (FFS), and overall survival (OS) were estimated and a historical comparison to CHOP-only-treated patients was made. Results: The International Prognostic Index (IPI) distribution was 47% low, 36% low intermediate, 13% high intermediate, and 4% high risk. The complete response rate was 96%. Forty-four of 45 patients are still alive. Median follow-up for the alive patients is 3.5 years. The 3-year FFS rate according to the IPI was 80% [95% confidence interval (CI) 64% to 100%] in low, 81% in low intermediate (95% CI 64% to 100%), and 50% (95% CI 25% to 100%) in high-intermediate/high-risk patient group. The addition of rituximab to CHOP improved both 5-year FFS, 71% (95% CI 58% to 87%) compared with 44% (95% CI 36% to 55%) with P value of 0.019, and 5-year OS, 98% (95% CI 93% to 100%) compared with 75% (95% CI 67% to 84%) with P value of 0.0034. Conclusion: The addition of rituximab to CHOP provided a high response rate and excellent early survival. Poor-risk patients continue to demonstrate a high rate of failure despite the use of rituximab.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)553-559
Number of pages7
JournalAnnals of Oncology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2008


  • CHOP
  • Follicular lymphoma grade 3
  • Outcome
  • Rituximab
  • Therapy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology
  • Oncology


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