The Connect CLL Registry: final analysis of 1494 patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia across 199 US sites

Blood Adv. 2020 Apr 14;4(7):1407-1418. doi: 10.1182/bloodadvances.2019001145.


Optimal treatment of chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) remains unclear. The Connect CLL Registry, a United States-based multicenter prospective observational cohort study, enrolled 1494 patients between 2010 and 2014 from predominantly community-based settings. Patients were grouped by line of therapy (LOT) at enrollment. With a median follow-up of 46.6 months (range, 0-63.0 months), median overall survival (OS) was not reached in LOT1, 63.0 months (95% confidence interval [CI], 46.0-63.0 months) in LOT2, and 38.0 months (95% CI, 33.0-47.0 months) in LOT≥3. Bendamustine and rituximab (BR; 33.5%); fludarabine, cyclophosphamide, and rituximab (FCR; 21.4%); and rituximab monotherapy (18.5%) were the most common regimens across LOTs. Median event-free survival (EFS) was similar in patients treated with BR (59.0 months) and FCR (55.0 months) in LOT1; median OS was not reached. In multivariable analysis, BR or FCR vs other treatments in LOT1 was associated with improved EFS (hazard ratio [HR], 0.60; P < .0001) and OS (0.67; P = .0162). Using the Kaplan-Meier product limit, ibrutinib vs other treatments improved OS in LOT2 (HR, 0.279; P = .009), LOT3 (0.441; P = .011), and LOT≥4 (0.578; P = .043). Prognostic modeling of death at 2 years postenrollment identified 3 risk groups: low (mortality rate, 6.2%), medium (14.5%), and high (27.4%). The most frequent adverse events across LOTs were pneumonia (11.6%) and febrile neutropenia (6.2%). These data suggest that advantages of LOT1 FCR over BR seen in clinical trials may not translate to community practice, whereas receiving novel LOT2 agents improved outcomes. This trial was registered at as NCT01081015.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study
  • Observational Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Antineoplastic Combined Chemotherapy Protocols / therapeutic use
  • Humans
  • Leukemia, Lymphocytic, Chronic, B-Cell* / diagnosis
  • Leukemia, Lymphocytic, Chronic, B-Cell* / drug therapy
  • Leukemia, Lymphocytic, Chronic, B-Cell* / epidemiology
  • Prospective Studies
  • Registries
  • Rituximab / therapeutic use
  • United States / epidemiology


  • Rituximab

Associated data