Copanlisib and Rituximab Show Efficacy in Follicular Lymphoma

Mark J. Roschewski, MD

Mark J. Roschewski, MD, discusses the preliminary results of a phase 2 trial of copanlisib and rituximab as treatment of patients with untreated follicular lymphoma.

Mark J. Roschewski, MD, staff clinician, associate research clinician, clinical director, Malignancies Branch, Center for Cancer Research, National Cancer Institute, discusses the preliminary results of a phase 2 trial (NCT03789240) of copanlisib (Aliqopa) and rituximab (Rituxan) as treatment of patients with untreated follicular lymphoma.

Roschewski thinks the most interesting data from the trial of copanlisib and rituximab were that all the patients responded and at least had a tumor reduction. The investigators knew the number of patients who would respond was going to be high, and so far, responses have been observed in all of the patients. The median reduction of patient tumors was about 40%, and the responses were rapid. If a patient tumor burden is being reduced by almost 50% after 1 cycle of treatment, that is very good for the patient, according to Roschewski.

To date, the majority of patients who have finished therapy experienced complete response after 6 cycles. Roschewski believes this is the main takeaway from the trial at this point.

In terms of toxicity, many patients experienced rashes, but the rash subsides as patients continue with treatment. No patients have stopped treatment due to toxicity.