Successful Treatment of a Patient with Brentuximab Vedotin-Refractory ALK-Negative Anaplastic Large Cell Lymphoma with Romidepsin

Case Rep Oncol. 2020 Nov 30;13(3):1402-1409. doi: 10.1159/000511111. eCollection Sep-Dec 2020.


We present the case of a 78-year-old male patient who was diagnosed with anaplastic lymphoma kinase (ALK)-negative, CC chemokine receptor 4 (CCR4)-negative, and CD30-positive anaplastic large cell lymphoma (ALCL). The patient had a past medical history of adult T-cell leukemia/lymphoma and colon cancers that had developed simultaneously approximately 2 years prior to the development of ALCL that were treated with immunochemotherapy and resection, respectively. Initial treatment for ALCL included brentuximab vedotin, an anti-CD30 monoclonal antibody-monomethyl auristatin E conjugate; however, we were unable to achieve a sufficient treatment effect. Romidepsin, an oral histone deacetylase inhibitor, was introduced as salvage chemotherapy; complete remission was attained. Interestingly, a reversal of the CD4/CD8 ratio and a reduction in human T-lymphotropic virus type 1 (HTLV-1) virus load was observed after 2 cycles of immunochemotherapy; the patient experienced upregulation of HTLV-1 Tax-specific cytotoxic T lymphocytes after a herpes zoster infection and the completion of immunotherapy. The immunologic status was maintained from the time of diagnosis through the completion of romidepsin therapy. Our findings indicate that romidepsin can be used safely and effectively to treat ALCL without impairing cellular immunity to HTLV-1.

Keywords: Adult T-cell leukemia/lymphoma; Anaplastic large cell lymphoma; Colon cancer; Cytotoxic T lymphocyte; Human T-lymphotropic virus type 1 Tax; Romidepsin.

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  • Case Reports