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Wednesday 15 May 2002

Randomized controlled trial of yttrium-90-labeled ibritumomab tiuxetan radioimmunotherapy versus rituximab immunotherapy for patients with relapsed or refractory low-grade, follicular, or transformed B-cell non-Hodgkin's lymphoma.

By: Witzig TE, Gordon LI, Cabanillas F, Czuczman MS, Emmanouilides C, Joyce R, Pohlman BL, Bartlett NL, Wiseman GA, Padre N, Grillo-Lopez AJ, Multani P, White CA.

J Clin Oncol 2002 May 15;20(10):2453-63

PURPOSE: Radioimmunotherapy combines biologic and radiolytic mechanisms to target and destroy tumor cells, thus offering a needed therapeutic alternative for refractory non-Hodgkin's lymphoma (NHL) patients. This phase III randomized study compares the novel radioimmunotherapy yttrium-90 ((90)Y) ibritumomab tiuxetan with a control immunotherapy, rituximab, in 143 patients with relapsed or refractory low-grade, follicular, or transformed CD20(+) transformed NHL. PATIENTS AND METHODS: Patients received either a single intravenous (IV) dose of (90)Y ibritumomab tiuxetan 0.4 mCi/kg (n = 73) or rituximab 375 mg/m(2) IV weekly for four doses (n = 70). The radioimmunotherapy group was pretreated with two rituximab doses (250 mg/m(2)) to improve biodistribution and one dose of indium-111 ibritumomab tiuxetan for imaging and dosimetry. The primary end point, overall response rate (ORR), was assessed by an independent, blinded, lymphoma expert panel. RESULTS: ORR was 80% for the (90)Y ibritumomab tiuxetan group versus 56% for the rituximab group (P =.002). Complete response (CR) rates were 30% and 16% in the (90)Y ibritumomab tiuxetan and rituximab groups, respectively (P =.04). An additional 4% achieved an unconfirmed CR in each group. Kaplan-Meier estimated median duration of response was 14.2 months in the (90)Y ibritumomab tiuxetan group versus 12.1 months in the control group (P =.6), and time to progression was 11.2 versus 10.1 months (P =.173) in all patients. Durable responses of > or = 6 months were 64% versus 47% (P =.030). Reversible myelosuppression was the primary toxicity noted with (90)Y ibritumomab tiuxetan. CONCLUSION: Radioimmunotherapy with (90)Y ibritumomab tiuxetan is well tolerated and produces statistically and clinically significant higher ORR and CR compared with rituximab alone.

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