[Show abstract][Hide abstract]ABSTRACT: Purpose:
The initial results of the APL0406 trial showed that the combination of all-trans-retinoic acid (ATRA) and arsenic trioxide (ATO) is at least not inferior to standard ATRA and chemotherapy (CHT) in first-line therapy of low- or intermediate-risk acute promyelocytic leukemia (APL). We herein report the final analysis on the complete series of patients enrolled onto this trial.
Patients and methods:
The APL0406 study was a prospective, randomized, multicenter, open-label, phase III noninferiority trial. Eligible patients were adults between 18 and 71 years of age with newly diagnosed, low- or intermediate-risk APL (WBC at diagnosis ≤ 10 × 10(9)/L). Overall, 276 patients were randomly assigned to receive ATRA-ATO or ATRA-CHT between October 2007 and January 2013.
Of 263 patients evaluable for response to induction, 127 (100%) of 127 patients and 132 (97%) of 136 patients achieved complete remission (CR) in the ATRA-ATO and ATRA-CHT arms, respectively (P = .12). After a median follow-up of 40.6 months, the event-free survival, cumulative incidence of relapse, and overall survival at 50 months for patients in the ATRA-ATO versus ATRA-CHT arms were 97.3% v 80%, 1.9% v 13.9%, and 99.2% v 92.6%, respectively (P < .001, P = .0013, and P = .0073, respectively). Postinduction events included two relapses and one death in CR in the ATRA-ATO arm and two instances of molecular resistance after third consolidation, 15 relapses, and five deaths in CR in the ATRA-CHT arm. Two patients in the ATRA-CHT arm developed a therapy-related myeloid neoplasm.
These results show that the advantages of ATRA-ATO over ATRA-CHT increase over time and that there is significantly greater and more sustained antileukemic efficacy of ATO-ATRA compared with ATRA-CHT in low- and intermediate-risk APL.
Full-text Article · Jul 2016 · Journal of Clinical Oncology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract]ABSTRACT: The aim of the present study was to identify risk factors for mortality in patients suffering from hematological malignancies (HMs) with bloodstream infections (BSIs) caused by Klebsiella pneumoniae (KP). We conducted a prospective cohort study on KP BSI in 13 Italian hematological units participating in the HEMABIS registry–SEIFEM group. The outcome measured was death within 21 days of BSI onset. Survivor and non-survivor subgroups were compared and Cox regression analysis was conducted to identify independent predictors of mortality. A total of 278 episodes of KP BSI were included in the study between January 2010 and June 2014. We found that 161 (57.9%) KP isolates were carbapenem resistant (CRKP). The overall 21-day mortality rate was 36.3%. It was significantly higher for patients with CRKP BSI (84/161, 52.2%) than for those with BSI caused by carbapenem susceptible KP (CSKP) (17/117, 14.5%; P<0.001). Septic shock (HR 3.86), acute respiratory failure (HR 2.32), inadequate initial antimicrobial therapy (HR 1.87) and carbapenem resistance by KP isolates (HR 1.85) were independently associated with mortality. A subanalysis was conducted in only 149 patients with CRKP BSI who had received ≥48 h of adequate antibiotic therapy, and combination therapy was independently associated with survival (HR 0.32). Our study shows that in recent years carbapenem resistance has dramatically increased in HM patients with KP BSI in Italy and is associated with a worse outcome. The optimal management of such infections and the definition of new empirical/targeted antimicrobial strategies in HM patients can still be considered unmet clinical needs. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
Full-text Article · Jul 2016 · American Journal of Hematology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract]ABSTRACT: The optimal treatment of older patients (>65 years) with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) remains challenging in daily clinical practice; a choice has to be made between intensive chemotherapy and best supportive care. To guide physicians, several prognostic factors have been identified and risk scores developed. Recently, the DNA methyltransferase inhibitor azacitidine has become available for use in MDS and AML patients with up to 30% bone marrow blasts. However, limited data are available on the outcome of older unfit AML patients, regardless of their bone marrow blast count. We retrospectively analyzed the outcome of 90 newly diagnosed older unfit AML patients in 9 Institutions from the Apulia Region (REP). Responder patients (evaluation performed after 4 cycles of treatment even in cases of primary failure) showed a better overall survival than non responders (23 vs 6 months, p<.001). ECOG PS≥2 seems to be correlated with OS in multivariate analysis, while neither primary treatment failure (documented after 2 cycles) nor bone marrow blast count were correlated with a worse overall survival either at univariate (22 vs 29 months, p=.ns; 16 vs 19 months, p=.ns) or multivariate analysis. Overall, the results of our retrospective analysis seem to confirm the efficacy of AZA treatment for this unfit AML patients setting, in terms of both CR and OS, regardless of the bone marrow blasts count, while primary treatment failure should not lead to a discontinuation of treatment.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract]ABSTRACT: In acute myeloid leukemia (AML), the detection of minimal residual disease (MRD) as well as the degree of log clearance similarly identifies patients with poor prognosis. No comparison was provided between the two approaches in order to identify the best one to monitor follow-up patients. In this study, MRD and clearance were assessed by both multiparameter flow cytometry (MFC) and WT1 expression at different time points on 45 AML patients achieving complete remission. Our results by WT1 expression showed that log clearance lower than 1.96 after induction predicted the recurrence better than MRD higher than 77.0 copies WT1/104 ABL. Conversely, on MFC, MRD higher than 0.2 % after consolidation was more predictive than log clearance below 2.64. At univariate and multivariate analysis, positive MRD values and log clearance below the optimal cutoffs were associated with a shorter disease-free survival (DFS). At the univariate analysis, positive MRD values were also associated with overall survival (OS). Therefore, post-induction log clearance by WT1 and post-consolidation MRD by MFC represented the most informative approaches to identify the relapse. At the optimal timing of assessment, positive MRD and log-clearance values lower than calculated thresholds similarly predicted an adverse prognosis in AML.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract]ABSTRACT: Unlabelled:
This multicentre observational study evaluated the feasibility, efficacy and toxicity of antifungal combination therapy (combo) as treatment of proven or probable invasive fungal diseases (IFDs) in patients with haematological malignancies. Between January 2005 and January 2010, 84 cases of IFDs (39 proven and 45 probable) treated with combo were collected in 20 Hematological Italian Centres, in patients who underwent chemotherapy or allogeneic haematopoietic stem cell transplantation for haematological diseases. Median age of patients was 34 years (range 1-73) and 37% had less than 18 years. Acute leukaemia was the most common underlying haematological disease (68/84; 81%). The phase of treatment was as follows: first induction in 21/84 (25%), consolidation phase in 18/84 (21%) and reinduction/salvage in 45/84 (54%). The main site of infection was lung with or without other sites. The principal fungal pathogens were as follows: Aspergillus sp. 68 cases (81%), Candida sp. six cases (8%), Zygomycetes four cases (5%) and Fusarium sp. four cases (5%). The most used combo was caspofungin+voriconazole 35/84 (42%), caspofungin + liposomal amphotericin B (L-AmB) 20/84 (24%) and L-AmB+voriconazole 15/84 (18%). The median duration of combo was 19 days (range 3-180). The overall response rate (ORR) was 73% (61/84 responders) without significant differences between the combo regimens. The most important factor that significantly influenced the response was granulocyte (PMN) recovery (P 0.009). Only one patient discontinued therapy (voriconazole-related neurotoxicity) and 22% experienced mild and reversible adverse events (hypokalaemia, ALT/AST increase and creatinine increase). The IFDs-attributable mortality was 17%. This study indicates that combo was both well tolerated and effective in haematological patients. The most used combo regimens were caspofungin + voriconazole (ORR 80%) and caspofungin + L-AmB (ORR 70%). The ORR was 73% and the mortality IFD related was 17%. PMN recovery during combo predicts a favourable outcome.
Clinical trials registration:
[Show abstract][Hide abstract]ABSTRACT: Cytarabine plays a pivotal role in the treatment of patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML). Most centers use 7 to 10 days of cytarabine at a daily dose of 100 to 200 mg/m(2) for remission induction. Consensus has not been reached on the benefit of higher dosages of cytarabine.
The European Organisation for Research and Treatment of Cancer (EORTC) and Gruppo Italiano Malattie Ematologiche dell' Adulto (GIMEMA) Leukemia Groups conducted a randomized trial (AML-12; Combination Chemotherapy, Stem Cell Transplant and Interleukin-2 in Treating Patients With Acute Myeloid Leukemia) in 1,942 newly diagnosed patients with AML, age 15 to 60 years, comparing remission induction treatment containing daunorubicin, etoposide, and either standard-dose (SD) cytarabine (100 mg/m(2) per day by continuous infusion for 10 days) or high-dose (HD) cytarabine (3,000 mg/m(2) every 12 hours by 3-hour infusion on days 1, 3, 5, and 7). Patients in complete remission (CR) received a single consolidation cycle containing daunorubicin and intermediate-dose cytarabine (500 mg/m(2) every 12 hours for 6 days). Subsequently, a stem-cell transplantation was planned. The primary end point was survival.
At a median follow-up of 6 years, overall survival was 38.7% for patients randomly assigned to SD cytarabine and 42.5% for those randomly assigned to HD cytarabine (log-rank test P = .06; multivariable analysis P = .009). For patients younger than age 46 years, survival was 43.3% and 51.9%, respectively (P = .009; multivariable analysis P = .003), and for patients age 46 to 60 years, survival was 33.9% and 32.9%, respectively (P = .91). CR rates were 72.0% and 78.7%, respectively (P < .001) and were 75.6% and 82.4% for patients younger than age 46 years (P = .01) and 68.3% and 74.8% for patients age 46 years and older (P = .03). Patients of all ages with very-bad-risk cytogenetic abnormalities and/or FLT3-ITD (internal tandem duplication) mutation, or with secondary AML benefitted from HD cytarabine.
HD cytarabine produces higher remission and survival rates than SD cytarabine, especially in patients younger than age 46 years.
Full-text Article · Dec 2013 · Journal of Clinical Oncology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract]ABSTRACT: Background:
All-trans retinoic acid (ATRA) with chemotherapy is the standard of care for acute promyelocytic leukemia (APL), resulting in cure rates exceeding 80%. Pilot studies of treatment with arsenic trioxide with or without ATRA have shown high efficacy and reduced hematologic toxicity.
We conducted a phase 3, multicenter trial comparing ATRA plus chemotherapy with ATRA plus arsenic trioxide in patients with APL classified as low-to-intermediate risk (white-cell count, ≤10×10(9) per liter). Patients were randomly assigned to receive either ATRA plus arsenic trioxide for induction and consolidation therapy or standard ATRA-idarubicin induction therapy followed by three cycles of consolidation therapy with ATRA plus chemotherapy and maintenance therapy with low-dose chemotherapy and ATRA. The study was designed as a noninferiority trial to show that the difference between the rates of event-free survival at 2 years in the two groups was not greater than 5%.
Complete remission was achieved in all 77 patients in the ATRA-arsenic trioxide group who could be evaluated (100%) and in 75 of 79 patients in the ATRA-chemotherapy group (95%) (P=0.12). The median follow-up was 34.4 months. Two-year event-free survival rates were 97% in the ATRA-arsenic trioxide group and 86% in the ATRA-chemotherapy group (95% confidence interval for the difference, 2 to 22 percentage points; P<0.001 for noninferiority and P=0.02 for superiority of ATRA-arsenic trioxide). Overall survival was also better with ATRA-arsenic trioxide (P=0.02). As compared with ATRA-chemotherapy, ATRA-arsenic trioxide was associated with less hematologic toxicity and fewer infections but with more hepatic toxicity.
ATRA plus arsenic trioxide is at least not inferior and may be superior to ATRA plus chemotherapy in the treatment of patients with low-to-intermediate-risk APL. (Funded by Associazione Italiana contro le Leucemie and others; ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT00482833.).
Full-text Article · Nov 2013 · New England Journal of Medicine
[Show abstract][Hide abstract]ABSTRACT: Background. To analyze the efficacy of antifungal prophylaxis (AFP) with posaconazole and itraconazole in a real-life setting of patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) during the first induction of remission.Methods. From January 2010 to June 2011, all patients with newly diagnosed AML were consecutively registered and prospectively monitored at 30 Italian hematological centers. Our analysis focused on adult patients who received intensive chemotherapy and a mold-active AFP for at least 5 days. To determine the efficacy of prophylaxis, invasive fungal disease (IFD) incidence, IFD-attributable mortality, and overall survival were evaluated.Results. In total, 515 patients were included in the present analysis. Posaconazole was the most frequently prescribed drug (260 patients [50%]) followed by fluconazole (148 [29%]) and itraconazole (93 [18%]). When comparing the groups taking posaconazole and itraconazole, there were no significant differences in the baseline clinical characteristics, whereas there were significant differences in the percentage of breakthrough IFDs (18.9% with posaconazole and 38.7% with itraconazole, P < .001). The same trend was observed when only proven/probable mold infections were considered (posaconazole, 2.7% vs itraconazole, 10.7%, P = .02). There were no significant differences in the IFD-associated mortality rate, while posaconazole prophylaxis had a significant impact on overall survival at day 90 (P = .002).Conclusions. During the last years, the use of posaconazole prophylaxis in high-risk patients has significantly increased. Although our study was not randomized, it demonstrates in a real-life setting that posaconazole prophylaxis confers an advantage in terms of both breakthrough IFDs and overall survival compared to itraconazole prophylaxis.Clinical Trials Registration. NCT01315925.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract]ABSTRACT: Despite a high remission rate, a significant number of patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) relapse. Thus, the evaluation of minimal residual disease (MRD) in AML is an important strategy to better identify high risk patients. Most sensitive methodology to detect MRD is molecular polymerase chain reaction (PCR) but its applicability is restricted to AML with leukemia-specific molecular targets (e.g. AML1-ETO, CBFB-MYH11, MLL, FLT-3). In our study, MRD was monitored at different time points with both MFC and WT1-RNA quantification in 23 AML patients who did not present specific molecular targets. As previously published, we considered values of 10(-3) (0.1%) in MFC and 90 WT1-RNA × 10(4) ABL copies as optimal thresholds. Receiver operating characteristics (ROC) analysis was used to confirm these data. To realize the methodology that better identify high risk patients, an analysis of sensitivity, specificity, predictive values (PV) and likelihood ratio (LR) was provided and similar results were showed. MRD levels ≥ 10(-3) in MFC as well MRD levels ≥ 90 WT1-RNA copies in RQ-PCR, identify risk groups of patients with poor prognosis. Therefore, MFC and WT1-RNA quantification showed a comparable capacity in terms of technical performance and clinical significance to identify high risk patients who eventually relapsed.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract]ABSTRACT: Therapy-related acute promyelocytic leukemia (t-APL) has been reported as a late complication of exposure to radiotherapy and/or chemotherapeutic agents targeting DNA topoisomerase II. We have analyzed in t-APL novel gene mutations recently associated with myeloid disorders. Unlike previous reports in acute myeloid leukemia (AML), our results showed neither IDHs nor TET2 mutations in t-APL. However we found an R882H mutation in the DNMT3A gene in a patient with t-APL suggesting a possible role of this alteration in the pathogenesis of t-APL.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract]ABSTRACT: To reduce toxicity in elderly patients with acute promyelocytic leukaemia, in 1997 the Gruppo Italiano Malattie Ematologiche Dell'Adulto (GIMEMA) started an amended protocol for patients aged >60years, with the same induction [all-trans retinoic acid (ATRA)+idarubicin] as in younger patients, followed by a single consolidation course (idarubicin+ cytarabine) and maintenance with intermittent ATRA. Among 60 enrolled patients, 54 (90%) achieved haematological remission and six died during induction. Four additional patients died in complete remission (CR) from haemorrhage (2) and infection (2) prior or during consolidation therapy. Eleven patients relapsed at a median time of 17·5months from CR. The 5-year overall survival (OS), disease-free survival (DFS) and cumulative incidence of relapse (CIR) rates were 76·1%, 64·6% and 27·4%, respectively. Univariate analysis identified a performance score (PS)=2 as the only significant adverse prognostic factor for both OS (P=0·017) and DFS (P=0·0003). Male sex had an unfavourable impact on DFS (P=0·021) and on CIR (P=0·019), but not on OS (P=0·234). In multivariate analysis for DFS, only PS=2 retained prognostic significance (HR=4·5, P=0·0083). In conclusion, the amended GIMEMA protocol is effective, with similar relapse rate and inferior toxicity compared to the original AIDA 0493. However, considering the recent availability of effective new agents, a less aggressive approach should be tested in this setting.
Full-text Article · Sep 2011 · British Journal of Haematology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract]ABSTRACT: The incidence of acute myeloid leukemia (AML) increases with age, but results of intensive chemotherapy in elderly patients are disappointing. Non-pegylated liposomal formulations of doxorubicin (Myocet™) have been developed with the aim of reducing systemic and cardiac toxicity especially in the elderly. We evaluated the efficacy and toxicity profiles of fludarabine, cytarabine and granulocyte colony-stimulating factor (FLAG) regimen given in association with Myocet™ in 35 patients with AML, median age 69 years (range 61-83 years). Nineteen (54.3%) had newly-diagnosed AML, twelve (34.3%) patients had secondary AML (ten with Myelodisplastic Syndrome, two with Primary Myelofibrosis) and 4 (11.4%) patients had had a late relapse (>12 months) of AML. Complete remission (CR) and partial remission (PR) were obtained in twenty-two (63%) and 3 (8.5%) patients, respectively. Seven (20%) patients showed a resistant disease. There were 3 early deaths (8.5%). Six patients (17%) experienced severe cardiovascular toxicity. The median overall survival (OS) was 12 months (range 1-52 months) with a median disease-free survival (DFS) of 20 months (range 1-48 months). One-year and two-year DFS were 78.9% and 26.7%, respectively. This study demonstrates that in elderly patients with AML, FLAG-Myocet combination shows promising efficacy response with acceptable toxicity, enabling most patients to receive further treatments, including transplantation procedures.
Article · Jul 2011 · International journal of immunopathology and pharmacology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract]ABSTRACT: Pregnancy is a high-risk event in women with essential thrombocythemia (ET). This observational study evaluated pregnancy outcome in ET patients focusing on the potential impact of aspirin (ASA) or interferon alpha (IFN) treatment during pregnancy. We retrospectively analyzed 122 pregnancies in 92 women consecutively observed in the last 10 years in 17 centers of the Italian thrombocythemia registry (RIT). The live birth rate was 75.4% (92/122 pregnancies). The risk of spontaneous abortion was 2.5-fold higher than in the control population (P < 0.01). ASA did not affect the live birth rate (71/93, 76.3% vs. 21/29, 72.4%, P = 0.67). However, IFN treatment during pregnancy was associated with a better outcome than was management without IFN (live births 19/20, 95% vs. 73/102, 71.6%, P = 0.025), and this finding was supported by multivariate analysis (OR: 0.10; 95% CI: 0.013-0.846, P = 0.034). The JAK2 V617F mutation was associated with a poorer outcome (fetal losses JAK2 V617F positive 9/25, 36% vs. wild type 2/24, 8.3%, P = 0.037), and this association was still significant after multivariate analysis (OR: 6.19; 95% CI: 1.17-32.61; P = 0.038). No outcome concordance between first and second pregnancies was found (P = 0.30). Maternal complications occurred in 8% of cases. In this retrospective study, in consecutively observed pregnant ET patients, IFN treatment was associated with a higher live birth rate, while ASA treatment was not. In addition, the JAK2 V617F mutation was confirmed to be an adverse prognostic factor.
Article · Oct 2009 · American Journal of Hematology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract]ABSTRACT: The aim of this study was to evaluate prognostic factors, treatments and outcome of invasive aspergillosis in patients with acute myeloid leukemia based on data collected in a registry.
The registry, which was activated in 2004 and closed in 2007, collected data on patients with acute myeloid leukemia, admitted to 21 hematologic divisions in tertiary care centers or university hospitals in Italy, who developed proven or probable invasive aspergillosis.
One hundred and forty cases of invasive aspergillosis were collected, with most cases occurring during the period of post-induction aplasia, the highest risk phase in acute myeloid leukemia. The mortality rate attributable to invasive aspergillosis was 27%, confirming previous reports of a downward trend in this rate. Univariate and multivariate analyses revealed that the stage of acute myeloid leukemia and the duration of, and recovery from, neutropenia were independent prognostic factors. We analyzed outcomes after treatment with the three most frequently used drugs (liposomal amphotericin B, caspofungin, voriconazole). No differences emerged in survival at day 120 or in the overall response rate which was 71%, ranging from 61% with caspofungin to 84% with voriconazole.
Our series confirms the downward trend in mortality rates reported in previous series, with all new drugs providing similar survival and response rates. Recovery from neutropenia and disease stage are crucial prognostic factors. Efficacious antifungal drugs bridge the period of maximum risk due to poor hematologic and immunological reconstitution.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract]ABSTRACT: A retrospective study of 76 episodes of candidemia in 73 patients with underlying hematological malignancy, from 1988 until 1997, has been conducted to evaluate the clinical characteristics and to ascertain the variables related to the onset and the outcome of candidemia. The most frequent malignancy was acute myeloid leukemia (29 episodes). Candidemia developed mainly during aplasia in patients refractory to chemotherapy (42%). In 65 episodes (86%) the patients were neutropenic (ANC < 1×109/l) before the candidemia diagnosis for a median time of 13 d, and in 53 episodes (70%) at microbiological diagnosis of candidemia ANC was <1×109/l. Candida albicans was the most frequently isolated etiologic agent (31 episodes), but C. non-albicans species sustained the majority of candidemia. Seventeen candidemias developed during azoles prophylaxis. One month after the diagnosis of candidemia, 26 patients died. In 19 cases, death was attributable to candidemia. The case-control study demonstrated, at univariate analysis, that the colonization with Candida, spp. (p=0.004), antimycotic prophylaxis (p=0.01), presence of central venous catheter (p=0.01), neutropenia (p=0.002), and the use of glycopeptide (p=0.0001) increased the risk of candidemia. Using multivariate regression analysis only colonization with Candida spp. and the previous therapy with glycopeptide were associated with a significantly increased risk. Acute mortality, expressed by a cumulative probability of survival at 30 d from diagnosis of candidemia, was 0.67 (95% C.I. 0.55–0.77) and was significantly reduced in patients with neutrophils <1×109/l when compared to those with neutrophils > 1×109/l (p at Mantel-Cox=0.029). Overall cumulative probability of survival at 1 yr was 0.38 (95% C.I. 0.27–0.49) and only the treatment with Amfotericin B significantly reduced the risk of death.
Full-text Article · Apr 2009 · European Journal Of Haematology