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Outcome for Children and Young Adults With T-Cell ALL and Induction Failure in Contemporary Trials

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Anthony MoormanORCiD


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PURPOSE: Historically, patients with T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (T-ALL) who fail to achieve remission at the end of induction (EOI) have had poor long-term survival. The goal of this study was to examine the efficacy of contemporary therapy, including allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) in first remission (CR1). METHODS: Induction failure (IF) was defined as the persistence of at least 5% bone marrow (BM) lymphoblasts and/or extramedullary disease after 4-6 weeks of induction chemotherapy. Disease features and clinical outcomes were reported in 325 of 6,167 (5%) patients age 21 years and younger treated in 14 cooperative study groups between 2000 and 2018. RESULTS: With a median follow-up period of 6.4 years (range, 0.3-17.9 years), the 10-year overall survival (OS) was 54.7% (SE = 2.9), which is significantly higher than the 27.6% (SE = 2.9) observed in the historical cohort from 1985 to 2000. There was no significant impact of sex, age, white blood cell count, central nervous system disease status, T-cell maturity, or BM disease burden at EOI on OS. Postinduction complete remission (CR) was achieved in 93% of patients with 10-year OS of 59.6% (SE = 3.1%) and disease-free survival (DFS) of 56.3% (SE = 3.1%). Among the patients who achieved CR, 72% underwent HSCT and their 10-year DFS (with a 190-day landmark) was significantly better than nontransplanted patients (63.8% [SE = 3.6] v 45.5% [SE = 7.1]; P = .005), with OS of 66.2% (SE = 3.6) versus 50.8% (SE = 6.8); P = .10, respectively. CONCLUSION: Outcomes for patients age 21 years and younger with T-ALL and IF have improved in the contemporary treatment era with a DFS benefit among those undergoing HSCT in CR1. However, outcomes still lag considerably behind those who achieve remission at EOI, warranting investigation of new treatment approaches.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Raetz EA, Rebora P, Conter V, Schrappe M, Devidas M, Escherich G, Imai C, De Moerloose B, Schmiegelow K, Burns MA, Elitzur S, Pieters R, Attarbaschi A, Yeoh A, Pui C-H, Stary J, Cario G, Bodmer N, Moorman AV, Buldini B, Vora A, Valsecchi MG

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Journal of Clinical Oncology

Year: 2023

Volume: 41

Issue: 32

Pages: 5025-5034

Print publication date: 10/11/2023

Online publication date: 24/07/2023

Acceptance date: 02/04/2023

ISSN (print): 0732-183X

ISSN (electronic): 1527-7755

Publisher: American Society of Clinical Oncology


DOI: 10.1200/JCO.23.00088

PubMed id: 37487146


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