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Blood. 1999 Jun 1;93(11):3678-84.

Selective ablation of acute myeloid leukemia using antibody-targeted chemotherapy: a phase I study of an anti-CD33 calicheamicin immunoconjugate.

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Clinical Research Division, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle, WA, USA.


Leukemic blast cells express the CD33 antigen in most patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML), but this antigen is not expressed by hematopoietic stem cells. We conducted a study to determine whether normal hematopoiesis could be restored in patients with AML by selective ablation of cells expressing the CD33 antigen. In a dose escalation study, 40 patients with relapsed or refractory CD33(+) AML were treated with an immunoconjugate (CMA-676) consisting of humanized anti-CD33 antibody linked to the potent antitumor antibiotic calicheamicin. The capacity of leukemic cells to efflux 3, 3'-diethyloxacarbocyanine iodide (DiOC2) was used to estimate pretreatment functional drug resistance. Leukemia was eliminated from the blood and marrow of 8 (20%) of the 40 patients; blood counts returned to normal in three (8%) patients. A high rate of clinical response was observed in leukemias characterized by low dye efflux in vitro. Infusions of CMA-676 were generally well tolerated, and a postinfusion syndrome of fever and chills was the most common toxic effect. Two patients who were treated at the highest dose level (9 mg/m2) were neutropenic >5 weeks after the last dose of CMA-676. These results show that an immunoconjugate targeted to CD33 can selectively ablate malignant hematopoiesis in some patients with AML.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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