Randomized phase III trial of ibrutinib and rituximab plus cyclophosphamide, doxorubicin, vincristine, and prednisone in non–germinal center B-cell diffuse large B-cell lymphoma

on behalf of the PHOENIX investigators

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Abstract

PURPOSE Ibrutinib has shown activity in non–germinal center B-cell diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL). This double-blind phase III study evaluated ibrutinib and rituximab plus cyclophosphamide, doxorubicin, vincristine, and prednisone (R-CHOP) in untreated non–germinal center B-cell DLBCL. PATIENTS AND METHODS Patients were randomly assigned at a one-to-one ratio to ibrutinib (560 mg per day orally) plus R-CHOP or placebo plus R-CHOP. The primary end point was event-free survival (EFS) in the intent-to-treat (ITT) population and the activated B-cell (ABC) DLBCL subgroup. Secondary end points included progression-free survival (PFS), overall survival (OS), and safety. RESULTS A total of 838 patients were randomly assigned to ibrutinib plus R-CHOP (n = 419) or placebo plus R-CHOP (n = 419). Median age was 62.0 years; 75.9% of evaluable patients had ABC subtype disease, and baseline characteristics were balanced. Ibrutinib plus R-CHOP did not improve EFS in the ITT (hazard ratio [HR], 0.934) or ABC (HR, 0.949) population. A preplanned analysis showed a significant interaction between treatment and age. In patients age younger than 60 years, ibrutinib plus R-CHOP improved EFS (HR, 0.579), PFS (HR, 0.556), and OS (HR, 0.330) and slightly increased serious adverse events (35.7% v 28.6%), but the proportion of patients receiving at least six cycles of R-CHOP was similar between treatment arms (92.9% v 93.0%). In patients age 60 years or older, ibrutinib plus R-CHOP worsened EFS, PFS, and OS, increased serious adverse events (63.4% v 38.2%), and decreased the proportion of patients receiving at least six cycles of R-CHOP (73.7% v 88.8%). CONCLUSION The study did not meet its primary end point in the ITT or ABC population. However, in patients age younger than 60 years, ibrutinib plus R-CHOP improved EFS, PFS, and OS with manageable safety. In patients age 60 years or older, ibrutinib plus R-CHOP was associated with increased toxicity, leading to compromised R-CHOP administration and worse outcomes. Further investigation is warranted.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1285-1295
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Clinical Oncology
Volume37
Issue number15
DOIs
StatePublished - 20 May 2019

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