A subanalysis of the GIMEMA-MMY-3006 trial was performed to characterize treatment-emergent peripheral neuropathy (PN) in patients randomized to thalidomide-dexamethasone (TD) or bortezomib-TD (VTD) before and after double autologous transplantation (ASCT) for multiple myeloma (MM). A total of 236 patients randomized to VTD and 238 to TD were stratified according to the emergence of grade ≥2 PN. Gene expression profiles (GEP) of CD138+ plasma cells were analyzed in 120 VTD-treated patients. The incidence of grade ≥2 PN was 35% in the VTD arm and 10% in the TD arm (P < 0.001). PN resolved in 88 and 95% of patients in VTD and TD groups, respectively. Rates of complete/near complete response, progression-free and overall survival were not adversely affected by emergence of grade ≥2 PN. Baseline characteristics were not risk factors for PN, while GEP analysis revealed the deregulated expression of genes implicated in cytoskeleton rearrangement, neurogenesis, and axonal guidance. In conclusion, in comparison with TD, incorporation of VTD into ASCT was associated with a higher incidence of PN which, however, was reversible in most of the patients and did not adversely affect their outcomes nor their ability to subsequently receive ASCT. GEP analysis suggests an interaction between myeloma genetic profiles and development of VTD-induced PN.
© 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.