Purpose: Despite the identification of several baseline prognostic indicators, the outcome of patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) is generally heterogeneous. The effects of autologous (AuSCT) or allogeneic stem-cell transplantation (SCT) are still under evaluation. Minimal residual disease (MRD) states may be essential for assigning patients to therapy-dependent risk categories. Patients and Methods: By multiparametric flow cytometry, we assessed the levels of MRD in 142 patients with AML who achieved complete remission after intensive chemotherapy. Results: A level of 3.5 × 10-4 residual leukemia cells (RLCs) after consolidation therapy was established to identify MRD-negative and MRD-positive cases, with 5-year relapse-free survival (RFS) rates of 60% and 16%, respectively (P <.0001) and overall survival (OS) rates of 62% and 23%, respectively (P = .0001). Of patients (n = 77) who underwent a transplantation procedure (56 AuSCT and 21 SCT procedures); 42 patients (55%) were MRD positive (28 patients who underwent AuSCT and 14 patients who underwent SCT) and 35 patients (45%) were MRD negative (28 patients who underwent AuSCT and seven who underwent SCT). MRD-negative patients had a favorable prognosis, with only eight (22%) of 35 patients experiencing relapse, whereas 29 (69%) of 42 MRD-positive patients experienced relapse (P <.0001). In this high-risk group of 42 patients, we observed that 23 (82%) of 28 of those who underwent AuSCT experienced relapse, whereas six (43%) of 14 who underwent SCT experienced relapse (P = .014). Patients who underwent SCT also had a higher likelihood of RFS (47% v 14%). Conclusion: A threshold of 3.5 × 10-4 RLCs postconsolidation is critical for predicting disease outcome. MRD-negative patients have a good outcome regardless of the type of transplant they receive. In the MRD-positive group, AuSCT does not improve prognosis and SCT represents the primary option.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cancer Research