Medical Research: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?
Dr. Ruan: Mantle cell lymphoma is an uncommon subtype of non-Hodgkin lymphoma that primarily affects elderly populations. Conventional chemotherapy regimens are generally not curative, and may not be tolerated by many patients, underscoring the need for treatment alternatives. Previous experience with immunomodulatory compound lenalidomide has shown favorable activity and was well tolerated in patients with relapsedMantle cell lymphoma. We evaluated the efficacy and safety of the biologic combination with lenalidomide plus rituximab as initial treatment for mantle-cell lymphoma (MCL).
The main findings of the study showed that the combination was effective and generally well tolerated when given as induction and maintenance treatment. The overall response rate was 92%, with complete response rate of 64% in the 36 evaluable patients. Median duration of response has not been reached at a median follow up of 30 months. Treatment was outpatient-based and quality-of-life was preserved for most patients.
Medical Research: What should clinicians and patients take away from your report?
Dr. Ruan: Our study showed that outpatient-based biologic combination of lenalidomide plus rituximab can be considered as a useful option of initial treatment for some patients, particularly those who wish to avoid or cannot tolerate more aggressive approaches.
Medical Research: What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study?
Dr. Ruan: Further studies are warranted in a larger scale and with longer follow-up to evaluate the long-term outcome with biologic combination, as well as a better assessment of its value relative to other mantle-cell lymphoma regimens.
Jia Ruan, M.D., Ph.D. (2015). Combination Therapy Effective Against Mantle Cell Lymphoma