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Blood. 2006 Oct 15;108(8):2540-4. Epub 2006 Jul 11.

Standard chemotherapy with interferon compared with CHOP followed by high-dose therapy with autologous stem cell transplantation in untreated patients with advanced follicular lymphoma: the GELF-94 randomized study from the Groupe d'Etude des Lymphomes de l'Adulte (GELA).

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  • 1Centre Léon Bérard, 28 Rue Laennec, 69008 Lyon, France.


The purpose of this study is to compare our standard chemotherapy regimen (CHVP [cyclophosphamide, doxorubicin, teniposide, and prednisone]) plus interferon with 4 courses of CHOP (cyclophosphamide, doxorubicin, vincristine, and prednisone) followed by high-dose therapy with autologous stem cell transplantation (ASCT) in treatment-naive patients with advanced follicular lymphoma. Four hundred one patients were included from July 1994 to March 2001: 209 received 12 cycles of CHVP plus interferon alpha for 18 months (CHVP-I arm) and 192 received 4 cycles of CHOP followed by high-dose therapy (HDT) with total body irradiation and ASCT (CHOP-HDT arm). Overall response rates were similar in both groups (79% and 78% after induction chemotherapy, respectively). One hundred thirty-one of the 150 patients eligible for HDT underwent transplantation (87%). Intent-to-treat analysis after a median follow-up of 7.5 years showed that there was no difference between the 2 arms for overall survival (P = .53) or event-free survival (P = .11). Patients with a complete response at the end of the induction therapy had a statistically longer event-free survival and overall survival (P = .02 and < .001, respectively). After long-term follow-up, our study showed that there was no statistically significant benefit in favor of first-line high-dose therapy in patients with follicular lymphoma. High-dose therapy should be reserved for relapsing patients.

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