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Cancer. 2011 Jun 1;117(11):2442-51. doi: 10.1002/cncr.25792. Epub 2010 Dec 14.

Phase 2 trial of rituximab and bortezomib in patients with relapsed or refractory mantle cell and follicular lymphoma.

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  • 1Division of Hematology, Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio.



In vitro studies in mantle cell lymphoma (MCL) cell lines and patient-derived cells have demonstrated synergistic apoptosis with combined rituximab and bortezomib (R-bortezomib) compared with single-agent bortezomib. Therefore, the authors of this report evaluated R-bortezomib in a preclinical model and in a phase 2 clinical trial.


A Hu-MCL-severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID) model engrafted with the Jeko cell line was treated with R-bortezomib, bortezomib, or rituximab. Twenty-five patients with relapsed follicular lymphoma (n = 11) and MCL (n = 14) received 375 mg/m(2) rituximab on Days 1 and 8 and 1.3 to 1.5 mg/m(2) bortezomib on Days 1, 4, 8, and 11 every 21 days for a median of 3 cycles (range, 1-5 cycles).


R-bortezomib resulted in a statistically significant improvement in overall survival in Hu-MCL-SCID mice. In the clinical trial, the overall response rate was 40% in all 25 patients, 55% in patients with follicular lymphoma, and 29% in patients with MCL. The estimated 2-year progression-free survival (PFS) rate was 24% (95% confidence interval [CI], 10%-53%) in all patients and 60% (95% CI, 20%-85%) in responding patients. Thirteen patients (52%) developed grade 3 neurotoxicity, which consisted of constipation/ileus, sensory or motor neuropathy, or orthostatic hypotension. Patients who were heterozygous for the CD32a (Fcγ receptor IIa) 131 histidine (H) to arginine (R) polymorphism had a significantly decreased PFS (P = .009) after R-bortezomib compared with HH and RR homozygotes.


R-bortezomib had significant activity in patients with relapsed or refractory follicular lymphoma and MCL, although an unexpectedly high incidence of grade 3 neurologic toxicity was a potential limiting factor with this combination.

Copyright © 2010 American Cancer Society.


bortezomib; follicular lymphoma; mantle cell lymphoma; neuropathy; rituximab

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