B-cell receptor kinase inhibitor (KI) therapy represents a paradigm shift in chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) management, but data on practice patterns after KI discontinuation and optimal sequencing are limited. We conducted a multicenter, retrospective, comprehensive analysis on 178 patients with CLL (ibrutinib = 143; idelalisib = 35) who discontinued KI therapy. We examined responses, toxicity, post-KI therapies, and overall survival (OS). Patients had a median of 3 prior therapies (range 0-11); del17p (34%), p53 mutation (27%), del11q (33%), and complex karyotype (29%). Overall response rate (ORR) to first KI was 62% (complete response 14%). The most common reasons for KI discontinuation were toxicity (51%), CLL progression (29%), and Richter transformation (RT) (8%). Median progression-free survival (PFS) and OS from KI initiation were 10.5 and 29 months, respectively. Notably, initial KI choice did not impact PFS or OS; however, RT portended significantly inferior OS (P = .0007). One hundred fourteen patients received subsequent salvage therapy following KI discontinuation with an ORR to subsequent KI at 50% and a median PFS of 11.9 months. Median PFS in KI-intolerant patients treated with an alternate KI was not reached vs 7 months for patients with CLL progression. In summary, these data demonstrate that toxicity was the most common reason for KI discontinuation, that patients who discontinue KI due to toxicity can respond to an alternate KI, and that these responses may be durable. This trial was registered at www.clinicaltrials.gov as #NCT02717611 and #NCT02742090.
© 2016 by The American Society of Hematology.