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Cancer. 2009 May 15;115(10):2155-64. doi: 10.1002/cncr.24221.

The treatment of multiple myeloma using vincristine, carmustine, melphalan, cyclophosphamide, and prednisone (VBMCP) alternating with high-dose cyclophosphamide and alpha(2)beta interferon versus VBMCP: results of a phase III Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group Study E5A93.

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Division of Hematology, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota, USA.



A randomized controlled trial tested the hypothesis that aggressive initial therapy using high-dose cyclophosphamide (HiCy) and alpha(2)beta interferon (IFN) may be superior to standard combination alkylating agent regimens in the treatment of newly diagnosed myeloma.


This Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group trial evaluated 268 previously untreated patients with active multiple myeloma randomized to vincristine, carmustine, melphalan, cyclophosphamide, and prednisone (VBMCP) or VBMCP plus HiCy and recombinant IFN.


The overall objective response was 62% in the VBMCP regimen and 68% in the VBMCP + HiCy + IFN group. The near complete response and complete response rates were 8.1% and 8.9%, respectively. Progression-free survival was 22.1 and 25.3 months, respectively. The median overall survival was 37.1 months for patients treated with VBMCP and 41.3 months for those treated with VBMCP + HiCy + IFN (P = .38). The 5-year overall survival rates were not significantly different between the 2 arms: 26.4% and 33%, respectively. Lethal toxicities occurred in 15 patients, including 10 from infection, but there was no significant difference in lethal toxicities between the 2 regimens.


The study showed no significant benefit with the addition of HiCy and IFN to VBMCP.

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