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Blood. 2008 Aug 1;112(3):516-8. doi: 10.1182/blood-2008-02-141580. Epub 2008 May 20.

Failure to achieve a major cytogenetic response by 12 months defines inadequate response in patients receiving nilotinib or dasatinib as second or subsequent line therapy for chronic myeloid leukemia.

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Leukemia Department, University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX 77030, USA.


To determine when patients with incomplete responses on second-line tyrosine kinase inhibitor (2TKI) therapy should consider alternative treatment, we analyzed the outcome of 113 patients receiving nilotinib (n = 43) or dasatinib (n = 70) after imatinib failure. After 12 months of 2TKI therapy, patients achieving a major cytogenetic response (12MMCyR) had a significant survival advantage over patients in minor cytogenetic response or complete hematologic response, with a projected one-year survival of 97% and 84% respectively (P = .02). Projected 1-year progression to hematologic failure, accelerated phase, or blast phase was also significantly different (3% vs 17%, P = .003). Early cytogenetic response was strongly predictive of achievement of 12MMCyR, with less than 10% of patients showing no cytogenetic response at 3 to 6 months eventually attaining the target of 12MMCyR. These results suggest that patients receiving 2TKI with no cytogenetic response at 3 to 6 months should be considered for alternative therapies.

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