A Phase II Study of Ibrutinib Plus FCR as Frontline Therapy in Younger CLL Patients

Matthew S. Davids, MD, Associate Director, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute Center for Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia, discusses a multicenter study of ibrutinib (Imbruvica) plus FCR as a frontline therapy for younger patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL).&nbsp;<br /> &nbsp;

Matthew S. Davids, MD, associate director, Center for Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, discusses a multicenter study of ibrutinib (Imbruvica) plus fludarabine, cyclophosphamide, and rituximab (Rituxan; FCR) as a frontline therapy for younger patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL).

There are many effective therapy options available for the treatment of CLL, Davids says. Older, frailer patients with CLL may not need to receive a more aggressive regimen, such as this combination, and may benefit from novel agents instead.

This study focused on a younger, more fit population of CLL patients under the age of 65 who could tolerate a more aggressive treatment approach. The aim of the study was to build on the experience of FCR alone, which has been shown to have a curative potential for low-risk forms of CLL.

This study included patients with mutated and unmutatedIGHV. Patients were given the combination of ibrutinib and FCR for up to 6 months, followed by 2 years of ibrutinib maintenance therapy.

Results of the first 35 patients on this trial were reported at the 2017 ASH Annual Meeting. Typically, FCR alone induces about a 20% complete response (CR) rate. In this study, CR was nearly doubled, at 37% with the combination. Investigators did not see any additional side effects than what has been seen with either regimen alone, Davids notes.