Publications by authors named "Giovanni Bertoldero"

8 Publications

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Long-lasting efficacy and safety of lenalidomide maintenance in patients with relapsed diffuse large B-cell lymphoma who are not eligible for or failed autologous transplantation.

Hematol Oncol 2020 Aug 5;38(3):257-265. Epub 2020 May 5.

Vita-Salute San Raffaele University, Milan, Italy.

We report final results of a phase II trial addressing efficacy and feasibility of lenalidomide maintenance in patients with chemosensitive relapse of diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL) not eligible for or failed after autologous stem cell transplantation (ASCT). Patients with relapsed DLBCL who achieved at least a partial response to salvage chemoimmunotherapy were enrolled and treated with lenalidomide 25 mg/day for 21 of 28 days for 2 years or until progression or unacceptable toxicity. Primary endpoint was 1-year PFS. Forty-six of 48 enrolled patients were assessable. Most patients had IPI ≥2, advanced stage and extranodal disease before the salvage treatment that led to trial registration; 28 (61%) patients were older than 70 years. Lenalidomide was well tolerated. With the exception of neutropenia, grade-4 toxicities occurred in <1% of courses. Three patients died of complications during maintenance and three died due to second cancers at 32 to 64 months. There were 13 SAEs recorded in 12 patients; all these patients but two recovered. Lenalidomide was interrupted due to toxicity in other 6 patients, and 25 patients required dose reduction (transient in 21). At 1 year from registration, 31 patients were progression free. After a median follow-up of 65 (range 39-124) months, 22 patients remain progression free, with a 5-year PFS of 48% ± 7%. The duration of response to lenalidomide was longer than response to prior treatment in 30 (65%) patients. Benefit was observed both in de novo and transformed DLBCL, germinal-center-B-cell and nongerminal-center-B-cell subtypes. Twenty-six patients are alive (5-year OS 62% ± 7%). With the limitations of a nonrandomized design, these long-term results suggest that lenalidomide maintenance might bring benefit to patients with chemosensitive relapse of DLBCL not eligible for or failed after ASCT. Lenalidomide was associated with durable disease control and was well tolerated in this elderly population. Further investigations on immunomodulatory drugs as maintenance in these high-risk patients are warranted.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/hon.2742DOI Listing
August 2020

Safety and efficacy of switching from branded to generic imatinib in chronic phase chronic myeloid leukemia patients treated in Italy.

Leuk Res 2018 11 2;74:75-79. Epub 2018 Oct 2.

Division of Hematology and BMT, Department of Medical Area, University of Udine, Italy.

The use of generic drugs after patent expiration of their originators is a relative novelty in the treatment of chronic cancer patients in Western countries. In this observational study we analyzed a cohort of 294 Italian chronic phase chronic myeloid leukemia patients treated frontline with branded imatinib (Glivec®) for at least 6 months and then uniformly switched to generic imatinib upon requirement of health authorities in early 2017. Median age at diagnosis was 57 years (range 19-87). Sokal risk was low/intermediate/high in 55%, 32% and 8% of cases, respectively. Median duration of branded imatinib treatment was 7.4 years (range 0.5-16.7). At a median follow-up of 7.5 months after switch to generic imatinib, 17% of patients reported new or worsening side effects, but grade 3-4 non-hematological adverse events were rare. Six patients switched back to branded imatinib, with improvement in the side effect profile, and 4 pts moved to bosutinib or nilotinib for resistance/intolerance. The majority of patients were in major (26%) or deep molecular response (66%) at the time of switch. Molecular responses remained stable, improved or worsened in 61%, 25% and 14% of patients, respectively. We conclude that switch to generic imatinib for patients who have been receiving branded imatinib appears to be effective and safe. Molecular responses may continue to improve over time. Some patients experienced new or worsened side effects but less than 5% of the whole cohort needed to switch back to branded imatinib or move to other treatments. Savings were around 3 million Euros.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.leukres.2018.09.018DOI Listing
November 2018

Long-Term Results of the FOLL05 Trial Comparing R-CVP Versus R-CHOP Versus R-FM for the Initial Treatment of Patients With Advanced-Stage Symptomatic Follicular Lymphoma.

J Clin Oncol 2018 03 2;36(7):689-696. Epub 2017 Nov 2.

Stefano Luminari, Angela Ferrari, and Francesco Merli, Azienda Ospedaliera Arcispedale Santa Maria Nuova-Istituto di Ricovero e Cura a Carattere Scientifico (IRCCS), Reggio Emilia; Stefano Luminari, Martina Manni, Alessandra Dondi, Vittoria Tarantino, Luigi Marcheselli, and Massimo Federico, University of Modena and Reggio Emilia, Modena, Italy; Annalisa Chiarenza, Azienda Ospedaliera Universitaria Policlinico-Vittorio Emanuele, University of Catania, Catania; Chiara Rusconi, Azienda Socio Sanitaria Territoriale (ASST) -Grande Ospedale Metropolitano Niguarda; Andrés J.M. Ferreri, IRCCS San Raffaele Scientific Institute, Milano; Alessandra Tucci, ASST-Spedali Civili di Brescia, Brescia; Umberto Vitolo, Città della Salute e della Scienza University and Hospital, Torino; Sofia Kovalchuk, University of Florence, Florence; Emanuele Angelucci, Ospedale Policlinico San Martino, Genova; Alessandro Pulsoni, Sapienza University of Rome, Rome; Luca Arcaini, Fondazione IRCCS Policlinico San Matteo, Pavia; Francesco Angrilli, Spirito Santo Hospital, Pescara; Gianluca Gaidano, University of Eastern Piedmont, Novara; Caterina Stelitano, Grande Ospedale Metropolitano Bianchi-Melacrino-Morelli, Reggio Calabria; Giovanni Bertoldero, Ospedale di Mirano, Mirano; Nicola Cascavilla, IRCCS Casa Sollievo della Sofferenza Hospital, San Giovanni Rotondo; Flavia Salvi, Ospedale SS Antonio e Biagio, Alessandria; and Daniele Vallisa, Guglielmo da Saliceto Hospital, Piacenza, Italy.

Purpose The FOLL05 trial compared R-CVP (rituximab plus cyclophosphamide, vincristine, and prednisone) with R-CHOP (rituximab plus cyclophosphamide, doxorubicin, vincristine, and prednisone) and R-FM (rituximab plus fludarabine and mitoxantrone) regimens without rituximab maintenance as initial therapy for patients with advanced-stage follicular lymphoma (FL). A previous analysis with a median follow-up of 34 months showed a superior 3-year time to treatment failure, the primary study end point, with R-CHOP and R-FM versus R-CVP and showed R-CHOP to have a better risk-benefit ratio in terms of toxicity than R-FM. We report a post hoc analysis of this trial after a median follow-up of 7 years. Patients and Methods Of the 534 enrolled patients, 504 were evaluable. At the time of analysis, the median follow-up was 84 months (range, 1 to 119 months). Results The 8-year time to treatment failure and progression-free survival rates were 44% (95% CI, 39% to 49%) and 48% (95% CI, 43% to 53%), respectively. The hazard ratio for progression-free survival adjusted by FL International Prognostic Index 2 versus R-CVP was 0.73 for R-CHOP (95% CI, 0.54 to 0.98; P = .037) and 0.67 for R-FM (95% CI, 0.50 to 0.91; P = .009). The 8-year overall survival (OS) rate was 83% (95% CI, 79% to 87%), with no significant differences among study arms. Overall, we observed a higher risk of dying as a result of causes unrelated to lymphoma progression with R-FM versus R-CVP. Conclusion With an 83% 8-year OS rate, long-term follow-up of the FOLL05 trial confirms the favorable outcome of patients with advanced-stage FL treated with immunochemotherapy. The three study arms had similar OS but different activity and toxicity profiles. Patients initially treated with R-CVP had a higher risk of lymphoma progression compared with those receiving R-CHOP, as well as a higher risk of requiring additional therapy.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1200/JCO.2017.74.1652DOI Listing
March 2018

Lenalidomide maintenance in patients with relapsed diffuse large B-cell lymphoma who are not eligible for autologous stem cell transplantation: an open label, single-arm, multicentre phase 2 trial.

Lancet Haematol 2017 Mar 17;4(3):e137-e146. Epub 2017 Feb 17.

Unit of Lymphoid Malignancies, Department of Onco-Hematology, Milan, Italy; Vita-Salute San Raffaele University, Pathology Unit, Milan, Italy; San Raffaele Scientific Institute, Milan, Italy.

Background: Patients with relapsed diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL) not eligible for autologous stem cell transplantation (ASCT) or having relapse after ASCT have a low likelihood of cure. Single-drug maintenance after salvage therapy might be an attractive strategy to prolong survival in these patients. Lenalidomide is a suitable candidate for long-lasting maintenance as it is an oral drug, active against DLBCL that can be taken for years with an acceptable toxicity profile. We designed a study to investigate safety and efficacy of lenalidomide maintenance in patients with chemosensitive relapse of DLBCL not eligible for ASCT or having relapse after ASCT.

Methods: In this open-label, single group, multicentre phase 2 trial, we recruited HIV-negative adults with de novo or transformed DLBCL and relapsed disease responsive to conventional rituximab-containing salvage therapy from 12 oncology-haematology centres in Italy. All patients were given oral lenalidomide 25 mg per day for 21 of 28 days until lymphoma progression or unacceptable toxicity (severely compromises organ function, quality of life, or both). Primary endpoint was 1-year progression-free survival. The estimated sample size was 47 patients; maintenance was deemed efficacious if at least 19 patients were progression-free survivors at 1 year. All enrolled patients were included in primary analyses, with the exception of patients who post-hoc objectively did not meet the eligibility criteria (modified intention-to-treat). This study is registered with clinicaltrials.gov registry, number NCT00799513.

Findings: Between March 24, 2009, and Dec 22, 2015, we recruited 48 patients. 46 of 48 enrolled patients were assessable (two patients had unconfirmed diagnoses). 36 (78%) of 46 patients had de novo DLBCL and ten (22%) of 46 patients had transformed DLBCL. At a median follow-up of 25 months (IQR 12-56), 556 lenalidomide courses had been delivered, with an average mean of 12 courses (range 3-41) per patient; 19 patients were still in treatment at a median follow-up of 25 months. Lenalidomide was well tolerated; with the exception of neutropenia, grade 3-4 toxicities were uncommon. We recorded ten severe adverse events in nine patients due to febrile neutropenia (n=4), diarrhoea (n=2), melena, stroke, vomiting, and intestinal infarction; all but one patient recovered, and six of these patients continued with lenalidomide treatment. The exception was the only death due to toxicity (intestinal infarction). At 1 year from trial registration, 28 patients were progression free, which was much higher than the predetermined efficacy threshold. During the whole observation period, 21 events occurred: progressive lymphoma in 19 patients, death due to toxicity in one, death while off therapy in one, 1-year progression-free survival was 70% (95% CI 57-83).

Interpretation: With the limitations of a non-randomised design, this trial supports the use of lenalidomide maintenance in patients with chemo-sensitive relapse of DLBCL who are not eligible for ASCT or who had relapse after ASCT. These results warrant further investigation of immunomodulatory drugs as maintenance in high-risk patients with DLBCL.

Funding: Celgene Corp.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S2352-3026(17)30016-9DOI Listing
March 2017

The genotype of MLH1 identifies a subgroup of follicular lymphoma patients who do not benefit from doxorubicin: FIL-FOLL study.

Haematologica 2015 Apr 16;100(4):517-24. Epub 2015 Jan 16.

Division of Hematology, AOU "Policlinico V. Emanuele", Catania

Though most follicular lymphoma biomarkers rely on tumor features, the host genetic background may also be relevant for outcome. Here we aimed at verifying the contribution of candidate polymorphisms of FCγ receptor, DNA repair and detoxification genes to prognostic stratification of follicular lymphoma treated with immunochemotherapy. The study was based on 428 patients enrolled in the FOLL05 prospective trial that compared three standard-of-care regimens (rituximab-cyclophosphamide-vincristine-prednisone versus rituximab-cyclophosphamide-doxorubicin-vincristine-prednisone versus rituximab-fludarabine-mitoxantrone) for the first line therapy of advanced follicular lymphoma. Polymorphisms were genotyped on peripheral blood DNA samples. The primary endpoint was time to treatment failure. Polymorphisms of FCGR2A and FCGR3A, which have been suggested to influence the activity of rituximab as a single agent, did not affect time to treatment failure in the pooled analysis of the three FOLL05 treatment arms that combined rituximab with chemotherapy (P=0.742, P=0.252, respectively). These results were consistent even when the analysis was conducted by intention to treat, indicating that different chemotherapy regimens and loads did not interact differentially with the FCGR2A and FCGR3A genotypes. The genotype of MLH1, which regulates the genotoxic effect of doxorubicin, significantly affected time to treatment failure in patients in the rituximab-cyclophosphamide-doxorubicin-vincristine-prednisone arm (P=0.001; q<0.1), but not in arms in which patients did not receive doxorubicin (i.e., the rituximab-cyclophosphamide-vincristine-prednisone and rituximab-fludarabine-mitoxantrone arms). The impact of MLH1 on time to treatment failure was independent after adjusting for the Follicular Lymphoma International Prognostic Index and other potential confounding variables by multivariate analysis. These data indicate that MLH1 genotype is a predictor of failure to benefit from rituximab-cyclophosphamide-doxorubicin-vincristine-prednisone treatment in advanced follicular lymphoma and confirm that FCGR2A and FCGR3A polymorphisms have no impact when follicular lymphoma is treated with rituximab plus chemotherapy (clinicaltrials.gov identifier: NCT00774826).
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3324/haematol.2014.108183DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4380725PMC
April 2015

Minimal residual disease after conventional treatment significantly impacts on progression-free survival of patients with follicular lymphoma: the FIL FOLL05 trial.

Clin Cancer Res 2014 Dec 14;20(24):6398-405. Epub 2014 Oct 14.

Department of Diagnostic, Clinics and Public Health, University of Modena and Reggio Emilia, Modena, Italy.

Purpose: The role of the minimal residual disease (MRD) in follicular lymphoma is still debated. In this study, we assessed whether the BCL2/IGH rearrangement could have a prognostic role in patients receiving R-CHOP, R-FM, or R-CVP.

Experimental Design: DNAs from 415 patients among the 504 cases enrolled in the FOLL05 trial (NCT00774826) were centralized and assessed for the BCL2/IGH at diagnosis, at the end of treatment, and after 12 and 24 months.

Results: At diagnosis, the molecular marker was detected in 53% of cases. Patients without molecular marker or with a low molecular tumor burden (<1 × 10(-4) copies) showed higher complete remission (CR) rate and longer progression-free survival (PFS; 3-year PFS 80% vs. 59%; P = 0.015). PFS was significantly conditioned by the PCR status at 12 and 24 months, with 3-year PFS of 66% for MRD(-) cases versus 41% for those MRD(+) at 12 months (P = 0.015), and 84% versus 50% at 24 months (P = 0.014). The MRD negativity at 12 and 24 months resulted in an improved PFS both in CR and in partial remission (PR) patients (3-year PFS = 72% for cases CR/PCR(-) vs. 32% for those CR/PCR(+) vs. 62% for those PR/PCR(-) and 25% for patients in PR/PCR(+); P = 0.001). The prognostic value of MRD at 12 and 24 months of follow-up was confirmed also in multivariate analysis.

Conclusions: In this study, standardized molecular techniques have been adopted and applied on bone marrow samples from a large cohort. Data reported show that the MRD detection is a powerful independent predictor of PFS in patients with follicular lymphoma receiving conventional chemoimmunotherapy.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1158/1078-0432.CCR-14-0407DOI Listing
December 2014

Reduced-intensity allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation in metastatic colorectal cancer as a novel adoptive cell therapy approach. The European group for blood and marrow transplantation experience.

Biol Blood Marrow Transplant 2009 Mar;15(3):326-35

Division of Medical Oncology, Department of Oncological Sciences, Institute for Cancer Research and Treatment, Candiolo and University of Torino Medical School, Turin, Italy.

Reduced-intensity conditioning (RIC) regimens for allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HCT) allowed the existence of an allogeneic cell-mediated antitumor effect in metastatic colorectal cancer (mCRC) to be explored. We report on 39 patients with progressing mCRC treated with different RIC regimens in a multicenter clinical trial of the European Bone Marrow Transplantation Group. Disease status at transplant was progressive disease (PD) in 31 patients (80%), stable disease (SD) in 6 (15%), and partial response (PR) in 2 (5%). All patients engrafted (median donor T cell chimerism of 90% at day +60). Transplant-related morbidities were limited. Grades II-IV acute graft-versus-host disease (aGVHD) occurred in 14 patients (35%) and chronic GVHD (cGVHD) in 9 patients (23%). Transplant-related mortality occurred in 4 patients (10%). The best tumor responses were: 1 complete response (CR) (2%), 7 PR (18 %), and 10 SD (26%), giving an overall disease control in 18 of 39 patients (46%). Allogeneic HCT after RIC is feasible; the collected results compared favorably in terms of tumor response with those observed using conventional approaches beyond second-line therapies. The study of an allogeneic cell based therapy in less advanced patients is warranted.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bbmt.2008.11.036DOI Listing
March 2009

Pattern and distribution of immunoglobulin VH gene usage in a cohort of B-CLL patients from a Northeastern region of Italy.

Diagn Mol Pathol 2006 Dec;15(4):206-15

Department of Pathology, Venice, Italy.

We analyzed individual VH gene rearrangements in 55 consecutive B-chronic lymphocytic leukemia (B-CLL) patients collected from a northeastern region of Italy, stressing the possible differences related to geographic characteristics of the cohorts studied. Considering the percentage of somatic mutations present in the VH gene sequences and using the 98% cut-off value, 38 of the 55 B-CLL (69%) patients displayed somatic hypermutations and 17 (31%) had a germline configuration. Our results confirm and extend the observations of a bias in the use of certain VH, DH, and JH genes among B-CLL cells. The most frequently used VH genes were VH1-69 (12.7%) with VH3-23 (12.7%) and VH4-34 (10.9%). Collectively these genes accounted for 36.3% of the cases. In the mutated cases, the range of mutations varied from 2% to 15%, with a median of 6.5%. VH1-69 (7 cases, all unmutated) carried few mutations as opposed to VH3-23 (7 cases, 5 of which mutated), VH4-34 (6 cases, all mutated), and VH3-30 (5 cases, all mutated), which show a high load of mutations. D3 family genes were found frequently (38.1%) followed by D2 (27.2%) and D6 (18.1%). The individual D segment most frequently used was D3-3, which was present in 16.3% of cases. There was predominance of the JH4 gene (49%) followed by JH6 (40%). Analysis of the distribution of replacement and silent mutations in the mutated sequences using the method of Lossos showed in 39.4% of cases evidence of antigen selection in the framework region and/or complementary determining regions. In comparison with a recent study on B-CLL patients from the Mediterranean area, the VH4-34 gene was significantly overused in the mutated group at a percentage double that of the Italian cohort reported in this study (10.9% vs. 5%), but at a frequency similar to the entire Mediterranean region (10.7%). We also found an over-representation of VH1-69 usage in the germline group, at a frequency (12.7%) higher than previously described by the same authors (Italian 8%, Mediterranean 10.7%). On the contrary, VH3-07 and VH3-49 were not much used in our study (5.4% and 1.8%, respectively) compared with the Italian group (8% and 5.1%). In our study, VH3-23 gene segment was frequently expressed, at frequency as high as that of VH1-69, a finding in keeping with reported B-CLL Italian data, but higher than the entire series of the Mediterranean area (12.7% vs. 9.2%); VH3-21 gene, frequently expressed in northern European CLL but rarely in the Mediterranean area, was completely absent. This biased usage of VH family genes may reflect a geographic leukemic repertoire, perhaps owing to a peculiar genetic background, depending on variations in germline composition of the IgVH locus or to the effect of a potential environmental element less frequently encountered in different regions.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/01.pdm.0000213469.85301.d6DOI Listing
December 2006