Bortezomib with or without dexamethasone in primary systemic (light chain) amyloidosis

Efstathios Kastritis, Ashutosh D. Wechalekar, Meletios A. Dimopoulos, Giampaolo Merlini, Philip N. Hawkins, Vittorio Perfetti, Julian D. Gillmore, Giovanni Palladini

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Purpose: To assess the efficacy and tolerability of bortezomib with or without dexamethasone and to define prognostic factors for patients with primary systemic light chain (AL) amyloidosis treated with bortezomib or both. Patients and Methods: Ninety-four patients from three centers were analyzed: 19% received the combination as first-line treatment, 81% had a median of two previous therapies, and 69% had refractory disease, while most patients had symptomatic heart involvement or elevated serum N-terminal pro-brain natriuretic peptide (NT-proBNP). Results: A hematologic response was achieved in 71% within a median of 52 days, including 25% complete responses (CRs). Previously untreated patients had a 47% CR rate. Age 65 years or younger (P = .043) and twice weekly administration of bortezomib (P = .041) were associated with higher response rates. A cardiac response was documented in 29% of patients, in most as sustained improvement of functional class and less often as a decrease in wall thickness. Hematologic responses were associated with a cardiac response and NT-proBNP reduction. After a median follow-up of 12 months, 29% of patients had organ progression and 27% had hematologic progression. Median survival has not been reached and the 1-year survival rate is 76%. Baseline NT-proBNP was independently associated with survival (P = .001), while in a landmark analysis, survival was associated with NT-proBNP reduction of ≥ 30% (P = .006) and achievement of hematologic response (P = .001). Toxicity was manageable and mostly consisted of neuropathy, orthostasis, peripheral edema, and constipation or diarrhea. Conclusion: Bortezomib with or without dexamethasone is active in AL amyloidosis and induces rapid responses and high rates of hematologic and organ responses. Serial measurement of cardiac biomarkers is a powerful predictor of outcome.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1031-1037
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Clinical Oncology
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Feb 20 2010

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research
  • Oncology
  • Medicine(all)


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