Rituximab, an anti CD20 monoclonal antibody, has now become a cornerstone in the treatment of many CD20 positive hematological malignancies and a variety of autoimmune disorders. In contrast to the acute allergic and cytokine associated reactions, late adverse events of rituximab are indeed uncommon but at the same time probably under-reported. In this review, we detail late adverse events reported since its use in hemato-oncological neoplasias and other disorders. These adverse events include the development of late-onset neutropenia, defects of immune reconstitution with associated immune compromise, infections, progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy, reactivation of hepatitis, intestinal perforation and interstitial pneumonitis. Possible mechanisms involved in rituximab-associated complications and the pathogenesis of these adverse effects are reviewed and discussed. Evidence based graded recommendations for the management of these adverse effects are proposed.
- Antibody-based immunotherapy
- Lymphoma and Hodgkin lymphoma