Chemoimmunotherapy for mucosa-associated lymphoid tissue-type lymphoma: A review of the literature

Barbara Kiesewetter, Andeés J M Ferreri, Markus Raderer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background. Biological treatments, chemoimmunotherapy, and radiotherapy are associated with excellent disease control in both gastric and extragastric mucosa-associated lymphoid tissue(MALT) lymphomas.Systemic treatmentapproacheswithboth oral and i.v. agents are being increasingly studied, not only for patients with disseminated MALT lymphoma, but also forthose with localized disease. To date, however, recommendations for the use of available systemicmodalities have not been clearly defined. Materials and Methods. The present report reviews the current data on systemic treatment options for patients with MALT lymphoma and provides recommendations for their use in everyday practice. Results. Different chemotherapeutic agents, including anthracyclines, alkylators, and purine analogs, have been successfully tested in patients with MALT lymphoma. Reducing side effects while maintaining efficacy should be the main goal in treating these indolent lymphomas. Fromthe datafrom the largest trial performed to date, the combination of chlorambucil plus rituximab (R) appears to be active as first-line treatment. Similarly, R-bendamustine also seems to be highly effective, but a longer follow-up period is needed. R-monotherapy results in lower remission rates, but seems a suitable option for less fit patients. New immunotherapeutic agents such as lenalidomide (with or without rituximab) or clarithromycin show solid activity but have not yet been validated in larger collectives. Conclusion. Patients with MALT lymphoma should be treated within prospective trials to further define optimal therapeutic strategies. Systemic treatment is a reasonable option with potentially curative intent in everyday practice. Based on the efficacy and safety data from available studies, the present review provides recommendations for the use of systemic strategies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)915-925
Number of pages11
JournalThe oncologist
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 2015


  • Chemotherapy
  • Extranodal marginal zone lymphoma
  • Indolent lymphoma
  • Mucosa-associated lymphoid tissue lymphoma
  • Rituximab
  • Systemic treatment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research
  • Oncology


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