Background: Rituximab-hyper-CVAD alternating with rituximab-high-dose methotrexate and cytarabine is a commonly utilized regimen in the United States for mantle cell lymphoma (MCL) based on phase II single institutional data. To confirm the clinical efficacy of this regimen and determine its feasibility in a multicenter study that includes both academic and community-based practices, a phase II study of this regimen was conducted by SWOG.
Patients and methods: Forty-nine patients with advanced stage, previously untreated MCL were eligible. The median age was 57.4 years (35-69.8 years).
Results: Nineteen patients (39%) did not complete the full scheduled course of treatment due to toxicity. There was one treatment-related death and two cases of secondary myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS). There were 10 episodes of grade 3 febrile neutropenia, 19 episodes of grade 3 and 1 episode of grade 4 infection. With a median follow-up of 4.8 years, the median progression-free survival was 4.8 years (5.5 years for those ≤ 65 years) and the median overall survival (OS) was 6.8 years.
Conclusions: Although this regimen is toxic, it is active for patients ≤ 65 years of age and can be given both at academic centers and in experienced community centers.
Keywords: dose-intensive; mantle cell; rituximab.