Combination chemotherapy including epirubicin for the management of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma

Eur J Cancer Clin Oncol. 1987 Sep;23(9):1379-84. doi: 10.1016/0277-5379(87)90123-4.


One hundred patients with untreated non-Hodgkin's lymphoma were entered in a prospective randomized study in South and West Wales designed to assess the value of the anthracycline antibiotic, epirubicin (4'-epidoxorubicin), in their management. Patients with low grade histology and progressive disease were randomized to receive either epirubicin, vincristine and prednisolone (EVP) or cyclophosphamide, vincristine and prednisolone (CVP). The response rate of 81% in patients receiving EVP with complete remission rate of 52% were similar to a response rate of 88% and complete remission rate of 58% for patients receiving CVP. No difference was observed in survival between the two groups. Patients with high grade lymphoma were randomized to receive either cyclophosphamide, doxorubicin, vincristine and prednisolone (CHOP) or cyclophosphamide, epirubicin, vincristine and prednisolone (CEOP). The response rate was 71% for CHOP and 84% for CEOP. The complete remission rates were 46% for CHOP and 61% for CEOP. The cardiotoxicity of the two anthracyclines were monitored closely in 45 patients using measurements of systolic time intervals. Patients receiving epirubicin tolerated higher dose per course and higher total cumulative dose with less evidence of compromised left ventricular function than patients receiving doxorubicin. Epirubicin is an effective agent when used in combination chemotherapy in both low grade and high grade lymphoma with less toxicity than doxorubicin.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Antineoplastic Combined Chemotherapy Protocols / therapeutic use*
  • Clinical Trials as Topic
  • Cyclophosphamide / administration & dosage
  • Doxorubicin / administration & dosage
  • Epirubicin
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Lymphoma, Non-Hodgkin / drug therapy*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Prednisolone / administration & dosage
  • Prednisone / administration & dosage
  • Prospective Studies
  • Random Allocation
  • Vincristine / administration & dosage


  • Epirubicin
  • Vincristine
  • Doxorubicin
  • Cyclophosphamide
  • Prednisolone
  • Prednisone

Supplementary concepts

  • CEOP protocol 1
  • CHOP protocol
  • EVP protocol
  • VCP protocol 2