Optimization of chemotherapy for younger patients with acute myeloid leukemia: results of the medical research council AML15 trial.
Burnett AK., Russell NH., Hills RK., Hunter AE., Kjeldsen L., Yin J., Gibson BES., Wheatley K., Milligan D.
PURPOSE: Treatment outcomes in younger patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) have improved, but optimization and new combinations are needed. We assess three combinations in induction and consolidation. PATIENTS AND METHODS: Younger untreated patients with AML (median age, 49 years; range, 0 to 73 years) were randomly allocated to two induction courses of daunorubicin and cytarabine (DA) with or without etoposide (ADE; n = 1983) or ADE versus fludarabine, cytarabine, granulocyte colony-stimulating factor, and idarubicin (FLAG-Ida; n = 1268), and to amsacrine, cytarabine, etoposide, and then mitoxantrone/cytarabine (MACE-MidAC) or high-dose cytarabine (n = 1,445) 3 g/m(2) or 1.5 g/m(2) (n = 657) in consolidation, and finally to a fifth course (cytarabine) or not (n = 227). RESULTS: Overall remission rates were similar for DA versus ADE (84% v 86%; P = .14) and ADE versus FLAG-Ida (86% v 85%; P = .7), with more course 1 remissions after FLAG-Ida (77%) reducing relapse (38% v 55%; P < .001) and improving relapse-free survival (45% v 34%; P = .01), overall and in subgroups, but with increased myelosuppression, reducing participation in the consolidation randomization. Overall outcomes were similar between MACE/MidAc and high-dose cytarabine (1.5/3.0 g/m(2)), but cytarabine required less supportive care. MACE/MidAc was superior for high-risk patients. A fifth course provided no benefit. The outcome for recipients of only two FLAG-Ida courses were not different from that with DA/ADE with consolidation. CONCLUSION: FLAG-Ida is an effective remission induction treatment, with a high complete remission rate after course 1 and reduced relapse. Consolidation with MACE/MidAc is similar overall to high-dose cytarabine, but superior in high-risk patients. Cytarabine at 1.5 g/m(2) is equivalent to a 3 g/m(2) dose. A fifth course is unnecessary. In patients receiving FLAG-Ida (two courses) and cytarabine (two courses), 8-year survival was 63% for patients with intermediate-risk and 95% for those with favorable-risk disease.