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Sunday 01 December 2002

[Use of Mabtera (rituximab) in treating patients with refractory courses of B-cell lymphoma, along with high-dose chemotherapy and autologous transplantation of hematopoietic stem cells]

By: Ptushkin VV, Chimishkian KL, Zhukov NV, Osmanov DSh, Andreeva LIu, Tupitsyn NN, Larionova VB, Mkheidze DM, Poddubnaia NV.

Ter Arkh 2003;75(1):65-8

AIM: To study efficacy of rituximab in patients with resistant B-cell lymphoma on high-dose chemotherapy. MATERIAL AND METHODS: From September 2000 to April 2002 we studied efficacy and tolerance of rituximab at different stages of high-dose chemotherapy. The treatment was given to 10 patients with histologically verified CD20+ non-Hodgkin's lymphoma: diffuse large-cell (n = 4), Berkitt's (n = 2), follicular (n = 3), mantle-cell (n = 1). Five patients with diffuse large-cell lymphoma and Berkitt's lymphoma had a primary resistant course of the disease, one patient with diffuse large-cell lymphoma had a refractory recurrence. Follicular and mantle-cell lymphomas were characterized by a resistant course and large tumor masses. The patients received 1-2 courses of induction chemotherapy with dexa-BEAM with collection of peripheral stem cells followed by high-dose chemotherapy (BEAM-9, CBV + mitoxantron-1) with transplantation of autologous stem blood cells. Rituximab infusion (375 mg/m2) was conducted before the collection of the stem cells, prior to high-dose chemotherapy and in posttransplantation period after recovery of hemopoiesis. RESULTS: 4 patients achieved complete remission, 3-partial remission, 2 had progression and 1-stabilization. In mean follow-up 11 (2-20) months 7 of 10 patients were alive, overall survival being 15 +/- 2.4 months (95% confidence interval 10-19.7), median was not reached. 5 patients are in complete remission: 2 of them without further treatment, 3-after progression and repeat therapy including rituximab and interferon-alpha or rotuximab and CHOP chemotherapy. CONCLUSION: The addition of rituximab can improve the results of high-dose chemotherapy of patients with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma resistant to standard doses of cytostatics. Repeat use of this drug can be effective in some patients with progression after high-dose chemotherapy with rituximab.

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