Adult T-lymphoblastic lymphoma is rare and has a poor prognosis. In the 80s, following the introduction of sequential, intensified chemotherapy, complete remissions in the order of 75%-95% of treated patients, were achieved. However, several patients, namely those with advanced disease, continued to relapse either in remission or during maintenance therapy. Moreover, all these early studies were not able to detect any valuable prognostic index to predict the outcome. In an attempt to reduce the relapse rate, upfront autologous stem cell transplantation in patients in complete remission was introduced. The results obtained with this approach were quite homogeneous, indicating a probability of disease-free survival of about 65%-75% and an overall survival rate of 60%. Successive therapies designed since 2000 were able to obtain complete remissions of above 90%, with a relapse rate in the order of 30% and an overall survival comparable to that obtained with the transplant procedure. Yet, these studies were also unable to detect valuable prognostic factors predictive of the outcome. Moreover, no study on the biologic profile of the disease has been developed. To improve the prognosis of Tlymphoblastic lymphoma it seems necessary to create national registries to collect both clinical and biological data of all lymphoblastic lymphoma patients. In this way it will be possible to reach critical numbers of data with which valid statistical analysis may be performed that is able to detect factors influencing the outcome. Moreover, subsets of patients needing intensified procedures such as stem cell transplant may be detected at diagnosis.
- Autologous stem cell transplantation, intensified chemotherapy
- T- Lymphoblastic lymphoma
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