Relevance of treatment-free remission recommendations in chronic phase chronic leukemia patients treated with frontline tyrosine kinase inhibitors

Gabriel Etienne, Carole Faberes, Fréderic Bauduer, Didier Adiko, François Lifermann, Corinne Dagada, Caroline Lenoir, Anna Schmitt, Emilie Klein, Marie Pierre Fort, Fontanet Bijou, Beatrice Turcq, Fanny Robbesyn, Françoise Durrieu, Laura Versmée, Samia Madene, Marius Moldovan, Sandrine Katsahian, Anais Charles-Nelson, Axelle LascauxFrançois Xavier Mahon, Stéphanie Dulucq

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Background: Tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKI) can be safely discontinued in chronic phase chronic myeloid leukemia (CP-CML) patients who had achieved a sustained deep molecular response. Based on the results of discontinuation trials, recommendations regarding patient selection for a treatment-free remission (TFR) attempt had been proposed. The aims of this study were to evaluate the rate of patients eligible for TKI discontinuation and molecular recurrence-free survival (MRFS) after stop according to recommendations. Methods: Over a 10-year period, newly diagnosed CP-CML patients and treated with first-line TKI in the nine French participating centers were included. Eligibility to treatment discontinuation and MRFS were analyzed and compared according to selection criteria defined by recommendations and first-line treatments. Results: From January 2006 to December 2015, 398 patients were considered. Among them, 73% and 27% of patients received imatinib or either second or third generation tyrosine kinase inhibitors as frontline treatment, respectively. Considering the selection criteria defined by recommendations, up to 55% of the patients were selected as optimal candidates for treatment discontinuation. Overall 95/398 (24%) discontinued treatment. MRFS was 51.8% [95% CI 41.41–62.19] at 2 years and 43.8% [31.45–56.15] at 5 years. Patients receiving frontline second-generation TKI and fulfilling the eligibility criteria suggested by recommendations had the lowest probability of molecular relapse after TKI stop when compare to others. Conclusion: One third of CP-CML patients treated with TKI frontline fulfilled the selection criteria suggested by European LeukemiaNet TFR recommendations. Meeting selection criteria and second-generation TKI frontline were associated with the highest MRFS.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3635-3645
Number of pages11
JournalCancer Medicine
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2021
Externally publishedYes


  • molecular recurrence-free survival
  • recommendations
  • tyrosine kinase inhibitor discontinuation

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