During the last few years, morphological, immunohistochemical, and genetic findings have placed anaplastic large cell lymphoma (ALCL) as a distinct clinicopathologic entity, and several reports have focused on the existence of different subtypes of the tumor. Particular attention has been paid to the ALCL-Hodgkin's-like (HL) subtype, which seems to be on the border between Hodgkin's disease (HD) and high-grade non-Hodgkin's lymphoma (HG- NHL). From September 1994 to July 1997, during the course of an Italian multicentric trial, 40 ALCL-HLs were randomized to receive as front-line chemotherapy MACOP-B (methotrexate with leucovorin, doxorubicin, cyclophosphamide, vincristine, prednisone, and bleomycin - a third- generation HG-NHL regimen) or ABVD (doxorubicin, bleomycin, vinblastine, and dacarbazine - a scheme specific for HD). All patients with bulky disease in the mediastinum at diagnosis underwent local radiotherapy after the chemotherapeutic program. Complete response (CR) was achieved in 17 of the 19 (90%) patients who were treated with MACOP-B, and in 19 of the 21 (91%) patients who were administered ABVD. The probability of relapse-free survival, projected at 32 months, was 94% for the MACOP-B subset and 91% for the ABVD subset. The majority of patients with mediastinal bulky disease obtained CR (evaluated with 67Ga single photon emission computed tomography [SPECT]) after their radiotherapy. The present study suggests that ALCL-HL, in line with its borderline status, responds in an equivalent way to third- generation chemotherapy for HG-NHL and to conventional HD treatment in terms of both CR and relapse-free survival rates. However, as to the latter, a longer follow-up period may be needed before stating the absolute equivalence of the two regimens used.
|Number of pages||5|
|Publication status||Published - Aug 1 1998|
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