De novo acute myeloid leukemia with multilineage dysplasia: Treatment results and prognostic evaluation from a series of 44 patients treated with fludarabine, cytarabine and G-CSF (FLAG)

University of Florence, Florens, Tuscany, Italy
European Journal Of Haematology (Impact Factor: 2.07). 05/2002; 68(4):203-9. DOI: 10.1034/j.1600-0609.2002.01651.x
Source: PubMed


To evaluate therapeutic results and prognostic factors from a series of 44 patients affected by de novo acute myeloid leukemia with multilineage dysplasia (MD-AML), treated with the combination of fludarabine, cytarabine and G-CSF (FLAG).
Forty-four patients with de novo MD-AML were treated with the FLAG regimen. The median age was 61 yr (range 31-75 yr). Induction therapy consisted of the FLAG regimen; consolidation included idarubicin plus cytarabine. Patients with a compatible donor and aged less than 55 yr were programmed to receive allogeneic bone marrow transplantation (BMT), while in those without a donor and aged less than 65 yr autologous transplantation with peripheral blood stem cells mobilized by a consolidation regimen plus G-CSF was planned. Bone marrow harvest was performed in poor mobilizers.
Complete remission (CR) was achieved in 28 out of 44 patients (64%). Death in induction occurred in four patients (9%), while 12 patients (27%) were resistant to FLAG. Toxicity of consolidation was negligible. Most patients aged less than 60 yr and achieving CR were eligible for transplantation procedures, the main reason of exclusion being early relapse. Median overall survival and disease free survival were 16 and 22 months, respectively. Unfavorable cytogenetics was the only parameter significantly related to inferior clinical outcome following multivariate analysis.
Multilineage dysplasia per se is not an adverse prognostic factor in AML patients treated with the FLAG regimen. Favorable results are obtained in patients with intermediate karyotype, while in those with adverse cytogenetics new approaches are clearly needed. The toxicity of the regimen is also acceptable in the elderly, and following induction/consolidation, most patients may be submitted to transplantation procedures.

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    • "Patients who respond to salvage therapy may then be candidates for allogeneic haematopoietic cell transplant (HCT), the only known potentially curative treatment for relapsed or refractory AML. A salvage regimen in common use is 'FLAG', which combines fludarabine, cytarabine (ara-C) and granulocyte colony-stimulating factor (G-CSF) priming (Estey et al, 1994; Visani et al, 1994; Estey et al, 1999; Jackson et al, 2001; Carella et al, 2001; Ferrara et al, 2002; Ossenkoppele et al, 2004; Bashey et al, 2006). Clofarabine is structurally related to fludarabine. "
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    ABSTRACT: This phase I/II study was conducted to determine the maximum tolerated dose, toxicity, and efficacy of clofarabine in combination with high dose cytarabine and granulocyte colony-stimulating factor (G-CSF) priming (GCLAC), in the treatment of patients with relapsed or refractory acute myeloid leukaemia (AML). Dose escalation of clofarabine occurred without dose-limiting toxicity, so most patients were treated at the maximum dose, 25 mg/m(2) per day with cytarabine 2 g/m(2) per day, each for 5 d, and G-CSF 5 μg/kg, beginning the day before chemotherapy and continuing daily until neutrophil recovery. The complete remission (CR) rate among the 46 evaluable patients was 46% (95% confidence interval [CI] 31-61%) and the CR + CR but with a platelet count <100 × 10(9)/l rate was 61% (95% CI 45-75%). Multivariate analysis showed that responses to GCLAC were independent of age, cytogenetic risk category, and number of prior salvage regimens. GCLAC is highly active in relapsed and refractory AML and warrants prospective comparison to other regimens, as well as study in untreated patients.
    Full-text · Article · Aug 2011 · British Journal of Haematology
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    • "The situation of this study was quite different because most patients were managed in regular rooms after chemotherapy. However, the incidence of TRM seemed to be acceptable and hematologic recovery was relatively fast, compared to the previous studies (12, 13, 15, 20, 28-30). "
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    ABSTRACT: A refractory and resistant disease to conventional induction chemotherapy and relapsed disease are considered as the most important adverse prognostic factors for acute myeloid leukemia (AML). Sixty-one patients (median age, 33.6 yr) with relapsed or refractory AML were treated with the FLAG regimen that consisted of fludarabine (30 mg/m(2), days 1-5), cytarabine (2.0 g/m(2), days 1-5) and granulocyte colony-stimulating factor. Of the treated patients 29 patients (47.5%) achieved complete remission (CR). Higher CR rates were observed for patients with a first or second relapse as compared to patients with a primary refractory response or relapse after stem cell transplantation (HSCT). There was a significant difference in the response rates according to the duration of leukemia-free survival (pre-LFS) before chemotherapy (P=0.05). The recovery time of both neutrophils (> or =500/microL) and platelets (> or =20,000/microL) required a median of 21 and 18 days, respectively. Treatment-related mortality (TRM) occurred in seven patients (11.4%), of which 71.4% of TRM was caused by an invasive aspergillosis infection. After achieving CR, 18 patients underwent consolidation chemotherapy and six patients underwent allogeneic HSCT. In conclusion, FLAG chemotherapy without idarubicin is a relatively effective and well-tolerated regimen for relapsed or refractory AML and the use of FLAG chemotherapy has allowed intensive post-remission therapy including HSCT.
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    ABSTRACT: The purine nucleoside analogues (PNA), fludarabine (FA), cladribine (2-chlorodeoxyadenosine, 2-CdA) and 2'-deoxycoformycin (DCF), represent a novel group of cytotoxic agents with high activity in low-grade lymphoid malignancies. However, several investigations have revealed that these agents are active also in acute myeloid leukemia (AML) and chronic myelogenous leukemia (CML). Synergistic interaction between FA or 2-CdA with cytarabine (Ara-C) have been demonstrated in both preclinical and clinical studies. PNA enhance the cell concentration of Ara-CTP, which is active metabolite of Ara-C. It is likely that the addition of granulocyte colony stimulating factor (G-CSF) may further improve the effects of FA (FLAG) or 2-CdA (CLAG). The addition of anthracyclines to induction therapy does not appear to result in a substantial advantage in terms of CR achievement and duration. An alternative approach to increase FLAG activity might be the addition of investigational drugs with novel mechanism of action, such as topoiromerase I inhibitors. The addition of anthracyclines to induction therapy does not appear to result in a substantial advantage in terms of CR achievement and duration. Clinical studies have confirmed the efficacy of PNA alone or in combination protocols in the treatment of AML. These regimens seem to produce superior results with acceptable toxicities in previously treated and relapsed, poor risk AML. However, early relapses remain a significant problem in a majority of refractory or relapsed patients in CR after treatment with PNA based regimens. To prolong remission duration or even cure AML, auto--or allo stem cell transplantation should be considered. However, FAMP or 2-CdA containing regimens may impair mobilization and collection of stem cells from peripheral blood for autotransplantation. Few studies have analyzed the role of PNA in CML. 2-CdA, FAMP and DCF can induce hematologic response in chronic phase of CML but cytogenetic responses have not been observed. Preliminary results suggest, that PNA used alone or in combination may be used as palliation in blast phase of the disease. However, currently, the role of these agents in CML is insignificant because of the high activity of Glivec in this disease. Finally, PNA, especially FA play an important role in non-myeloablative conditioning regimens for allogenic stem cell transplantation in high-risk patients, possibly also with myeloid malignancies.
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