Dasatinib versus imatinib in newly diagnosed chronic-phase chronic myeloid leukemia

N Engl J Med. 2010 Jun 17;362(24):2260-70. doi: 10.1056/NEJMoa1002315. Epub 2010 Jun 5.


Background: Treatment with dasatinib, a highly potent BCR-ABL kinase inhibitor, has resulted in high rates of complete cytogenetic response and progression-free survival among patients with chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) in the chronic phase, after failure of imatinib treatment. We assessed the efficacy and safety of dasatinib, as compared with imatinib, for the first-line treatment of chronic-phase CML.

Methods: In a multinational study, 519 patients with newly diagnosed chronic-phase CML were randomly assigned to receive dasatinib at a dose of 100 mg once daily (259 patients) or imatinib at a dose of 400 mg once daily (260 patients). The primary end point was complete cytogenetic response by 12 months, confirmed on two consecutive assessments at least 28 days apart. Secondary end points, including major molecular response, were tested at a significance level of 0.0001 to adjust for multiple comparisons.

Results: After a minimum follow-up of 12 months, the rate of confirmed complete cytogenetic response was higher with dasatinib than with imatinib (77% vs. 66%, P=0.007), as was the rate of complete cytogenetic response observed on at least one assessment (83% vs. 72%, P=0.001). The rate of major molecular response was higher with dasatinib than with imatinib (46% vs. 28%, P<0.0001), and responses were achieved in a shorter time with dasatinib (P<0.0001). Progression to the accelerated or blastic phase of CML occurred in 5 patients who were receiving dasatinib (1.9%) and in 9 patients who were receiving imatinib (3.5%). The safety profiles of the two treatments were similar.

Conclusions: Dasatinib, administered once daily, as compared with imatinib, administered once daily, induced significantly higher and faster rates of complete cytogenetic response and major molecular response. Since achieving complete cytogenetic response within 12 months has been associated with better long-term, progression-free survival, dasatinib may improve the long-term outcomes among patients with newly diagnosed chronic-phase CML. (ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT00481247.)

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial, Phase III
  • Comparative Study
  • Multicenter Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Antineoplastic Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Benzamides
  • Blast Crisis / prevention & control
  • Dasatinib
  • Disease Progression
  • Female
  • Fusion Proteins, bcr-abl / antagonists & inhibitors
  • Humans
  • Imatinib Mesylate
  • Kaplan-Meier Estimate
  • Leukemia, Myeloid, Chronic-Phase / drug therapy*
  • Leukemia, Myeloid, Chronic-Phase / pathology
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Piperazines / therapeutic use*
  • Protein Kinase Inhibitors / adverse effects
  • Protein Kinase Inhibitors / therapeutic use*
  • Pyrimidines / adverse effects
  • Pyrimidines / therapeutic use*
  • Thiazoles / adverse effects
  • Thiazoles / therapeutic use*
  • Young Adult


  • Antineoplastic Agents
  • Benzamides
  • Piperazines
  • Protein Kinase Inhibitors
  • Pyrimidines
  • Thiazoles
  • Imatinib Mesylate
  • Fusion Proteins, bcr-abl
  • Dasatinib

Associated data

  • ClinicalTrials.gov/NCT00481247