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J Clin Oncol. 2012 Jun 10;30(17):2134-9. doi: 10.1200/JCO.2010.34.1222. Epub 2012 Apr 30.

Deferasirox reduces serum ferritin and labile plasma iron in RBC transfusion-dependent patients with myelodysplastic syndrome.

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H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center and Research Institute, Tampa, FL 33612, USA.



This 3-year, prospective, multicenter trial assessed the safety and efficacy of deferasirox in low- or intermediate-1-risk myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS).


Eligible patients had serum ferritin ≥ 1,000 μg/L and had received ≥ 20 units of RBCs with ongoing transfusion requirements. The starting dose of deferasirox was 20 mg/kg/d, with dose escalation up to 40 mg/kg/d permitted.


A total of 176 patients were enrolled, and 173 patients received therapy. Median serum ferritin decreased 23% in the 53% of patients who completed 12 months of treatment (n = 91), 36.7% in patients who completed 2 years (n = 49), and 36.5% in patients who completed 3 years (n = 33) despite continued transfusion requirement. Reduction in serum ferritin significantly correlated with ALT improvement (P < .001). Labile plasma iron (LPI) was measured quarterly during the first year of the study. Sixty-eight patients (39.3%) had elevated LPI at baseline. By week 13, LPI levels normalized in all patients with abnormal baseline level. Fifty-one (28%) of 173 patients experienced hematologic improvement by International Working Group 2006 criteria; of these, only seven patients received growth factors or MDS therapy. Over the 3-year study, 138 (79.8%) of 173 patients discontinued therapy, 43 patients (24.8%) because of adverse events or disease progression and 23 patients (13.2%) because of abnormal laboratory values. The most common drug-related adverse events were gastrointestinal disturbances and increased serum creatinine. There were 28 deaths, none of which were considered related to deferasirox.


Deferasirox reduces serum ferritin and LPI in transfusion-dependent patients with MDS. A subset of patients had an improvement in hematologic and hepatic parameters.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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