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Blood. 2012 Aug 23;120(8):1589-96. Epub 2012 Jul 12.

Superiority of bortezomib, thalidomide, and dexamethasone (VTD) as induction pretransplantation therapy in multiple myeloma: a randomized phase 3 PETHEMA/GEM study.

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Hospital Clínic de Barcelona, Barcelona, Spain.


The Spanish Myeloma Group conducted a trial to compare bortezomib/thalidomide/dexamethasone (VTD) versus thalidomide/dexamethasone (TD) versus vincristine, BCNU, melphalan, cyclophosphamide, prednisone/vincristine, BCNU, doxorubicin, dexamethasone/bortezomib (VBMCP/VBAD/B) in patients aged 65 years or younger with multiple myeloma. The primary endpoint was complete response (CR) rate postinduction and post-autologous stem cell transplantation (ASCT). Three hundred eighty-six patients were allocated to VTD (130), TD (127), or VBMCP/VBAD/B (129). The CR rate was significantly higher with VTD than with TD (35% vs 14%, P = .001) or with VBMCP/VBAD/B (35% vs 21%, P = .01). The median progression-free survival (PFS) was significantly longer with VTD (56.2 vs 28.2 vs 35.5 months, P = .01). In an intention-to-treat analysis, the post-ASCT CR rate was higher with VTD than with TD (46% vs 24%, P = .004) or with VBMCP/VBAD/B (46% vs 38%, P = .1). Patients with high-risk cytogenetics had a shorter PFS and overall survival in the overall series and in all treatment groups. In conclusion, VTD resulted in a higher pre- and posttransplantation CR rate and in a significantly longer PFS although it was not able to overcome the poor prognosis of high-risk cytogenetics. Our results support the use of VTD as a highly effective induction regimen prior to ASCT. The study was registered with (NCT00461747) and Eudra CT (no. 2005-001110-41).

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