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Bortezomib(Velcade®)-Thalidomide-Dexamethasone (VTD) Is Superior to Thalidomide-Dexamethasone (TD) In Patients with Multiple Myeloma (MM) Progressing or Relapsing After Autologous Transplantation
Title of the conference
52nd American Society of Hematology Annual Meeting
San Diego, United-States, December 4-7, 2010
Introduction: The Thalidomide-Dexamethasone (TD) regimen has provided encouraging results in relapsed MM. To improve results, bortezomib (Velcade) has been added to the combination in previous phase II studies, the so called VTD regimen. In January 2006, the European Group for Blood and Marrow Transplantation (EBMT) and the Intergroupe Francophone du Myélome (IFM) initiated a prospective, randomized, parallel-group, open-label phase III, multicenter study, comparing VTD (arm A) with TD (arm B) for MM patients progressing or relapsing after autologous transplantation. Patients and Methods: Inclusion criteria: patients in first progression or relapse after at least one autologous transplantation, including those who had received bortezomib or thalidomide before transplant. Exclusion criteria: subjects with neuropathy above grade 1 or non secretory MM. Primary study end point was time to progression (TTP). Secondary end points included safety, response rate, progression-free survival (PFS) and overall survival (OS). Treatment was scheduled as follows: bortezomib 1.3 mg/m2 was given as an i.v bolus on Days 1, 4, 8 and 11 followed by a 10-Day rest period (days 12 to 21) for 8 cycles (6 months) and then on Days 1, 8, 15, 22 followed by a 20-Day rest period (days 23 to 42) for 4 cycles (6 months). In both arms, thalidomide was scheduled at 200 mg/Day orally for one year and dexamethasone 40 mg/Day orally four days every three weeks for one year. Patients reaching remission could proceed to a new stem cell harvest. However, transplantation, either autologous or allogeneic, could only be performed in patients who completed the planned one year treatment period. Response was assessed by EBMT criteria, with additional category of near complete remission (nCR). Adverse events were graded by the NCI-CTCAE, Version 3.0.The trial was based on a group sequential design, with 4 planned interim analyses and one final analysis that allowed stopping for efficacy as well as futility. The overall alpha and power were set equal to 0.025 and 0.90 respectively. The test for decision making was based on the comparison in terms of the ratio of the cause-specific hazards of relapse/progression, estimated in a Cox model stratified on the number of previous autologous transplantations. Relapse/progression cumulative incidence was estimated using the proper nonparametric estimator, the comparison was done by the Gray test. PFS and OS probabilities were estimated by the Kaplan-Meier curves, the comparison was performed by the Log-Rank test. An interim safety analysis was performed when the first hundred patients had been included. The safety committee recommended to continue the trial. Results: As of 1st July 2010, 269 patients had been enrolled in the study, 139 in France (IFM 2005-04 study), 21 in Italy, 38 in Germany, 19 in Switzerland (a SAKK study), 23 in Belgium, 8 in Austria, 8 in the Czech republic, 11 in Hungary, 1 in the UK and 1 in Israel. One hundred and sixty nine patients were males and 100 females; the median age was 61 yrs (range 29-76). One hundred and thirty six patients were randomized to receive VTD and 133 to receive TD. The current analysis is based on 246 patients (124 in arm A, 122 in arm B) included in the second interim analysis, carried out when 134 events were observed. Following this analysis, the trial was stopped because of significant superiority of VTD over TD. The remaining patients were too premature to contribute to the analysis. The number of previous autologous transplants was one in 63 vs 60 and two or more in 61 vs 62 patients in arm A vs B respectively. The median follow-up was 25 months. The median TTP was 20 months vs 15 months respectively in arm A and B, with cumulative incidence of relapse/progression at 2 years equal to 52% (95% CI: 42%-64%) vs 70% (95% CI: 61%-81%) (p=0.0004, Gray test). The same superiority of arm A was also observed when stratifying on the number of previous autologous transplantations. At 2 years, PFS was 39% (95% CI: 30%-51%) vs 23% (95% CI: 16%-34%) (A vs B, p=0.0006, Log-Rank test). OS in the first two years was comparable in the two groups. Conclusion: VTD resulted in significantly longer TTP and PFS in patients relapsing after ASCT. Analysis of response and safety data are on going and results will be presented at the meeting.
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