Publications by authors named "Natalie S Callander"

59 Publications

Impact of COVID-19 in Hematopoietic stem cell transplant recipients: A systematic review and meta-analysis.

Transpl Infect Dis 2022 Jan 14. Epub 2022 Jan 14.

Division of Hematologic Malignancies & Cellular Therapeutics, University of Kansas Medical Center, Kansas City, KS.

Background: Hematopoietic stem cell transplant (HSCT) recipients are at increased risk of mortality and morbidity with Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) due to severe immune dysfunction.

Methods: A literature search was performed on PubMed, Cochrane, and Clinical trials.gov from the date of inception to 12/08/2021. We identified 19 original studies reporting data on COVID-19 in HSCT recipients after screening 292 articles. Data was extracted following PRISMA guidelines. Quality evaluation was done using the NIH quality assessment tool. Inter-study variance was calculated using Der Simonian-Laird Estimator. Pooled analysis was conducted using MetaXL. A random-effects model was used to estimate the proportions with 95% confidence intervals (CI).

Results: Of 6711 patients in 19 studies, 2031 HSCT patients with SARS-CoV-2 infection were analyzed. The median age of patients was 56.9 (range 1-81.6) years, and 63% patients were men according to 14 studies. The median time from transplant to SARS-CoV-2 infection for autologous (auto) and allogeneic (allo) HSCT patients was 23.2 (0.33- 350.5) months and 16.4 (0.2- 292.7) months respectively. The median follow-up time after COVID-19 diagnosis was 28 (0-262) days. The COVID-19 mortality rate was 19% (95% CI 0.15- 0.24, I = 76%, n = 373/2031). The pooled mortality rate was 17% (95% CI 0.12- 0.24, I = 78%, n = 147/904) in auto-HSCT patients and 21% (95% CI 0.16- 0.25, I = 60%, n = 231/1103) in allo-HSCT patients.

Conclusions: HSCT recipients have a high risk of mortality and clinical complications due to COVID-19. There is a need for ongoing vigilance, masks, and social distancing, vaccination, and aggressive management of SARS-CoV-2 infection in HSCT recipients. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/tid.13792DOI Listing
January 2022

Optimizing Thromboembolism Prophylaxis for the Contemporary Age of Multiple Myeloma.

J Natl Compr Canc Netw 2022 Jan;20(1):91-95

8University of Wisconsin Carbone Cancer Center, Madison, Wisconsin.

Venous thromboembolism (VTE) is a major complication in all patients with cancer. Compared with the general population, patients with multiple myeloma (MM) have a 9-fold increase in VTE risk, likely because of their malignancy, its treatments, and other additional patient-related factors. In MM, thromboembolism events tend to occur within 6 months of treatment initiation, regardless of treatment regimen; however, the use of immunomodulatory agents such as thalidomide or lenalidomide, especially in combination with dexamethasone or multiagent chemotherapy, is known to create a significant risk for VTE. Currently, official recommendations for VTE prophylaxis in MM outlined in various national guidelines or multidisciplinary society panels are based on expert opinion, because data from randomized controlled trials are scarce. Large studies which have mainly focused on the efficacy of thromboprophylaxis in patients with cancer at higher risk for VTE either had a very low representation of patients with MM, or excluded them all together, limiting our ability to draw evidence-based conclusions on how to effectively protect MM population from VTE. In this brief perspective, we highlight some of the greatest challenges that have hampered the field concerning the availability of high-quality clinical trial data for the formulation of best VTE prophylaxis strategies in patients with newly diagnosed MM, as well as the rationale for the latest updates in the NCCN Guidelines on this topic.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.6004/jnccn.2021.7112DOI Listing
January 2022

NCCN Guidelines® Insights: Multiple Myeloma, Version 3.2022.

J Natl Compr Canc Netw 2022 Jan;20(1):8-19

28Mayo Clinic Cancer Center.

The NCCN Guidelines for Multiple Myeloma provide recommendations for diagnosis, initial workup, treatment, follow-up, and supportive care for patients with various plasma cell neoplasms, including multiple myeloma. These NCCN Guidelines Insights highlight some of the important updates/changes specific to the treatment of patients with multiple myeloma in the 2022 version of the guidelines.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.6004/jnccn.2022.0002DOI Listing
January 2022

Daratumumab, Carfilzomib, Lenalidomide, and Dexamethasone With Minimal Residual Disease Response-Adapted Therapy in Newly Diagnosed Multiple Myeloma.

J Clin Oncol 2021 Dec 13:JCO2101935. Epub 2021 Dec 13.

University of Wisconsin, Madison, WI.

Purpose: The MASTER trial combined daratumumab, carfilzomib, lenalidomide, and dexamethasone (Dara-KRd) in newly diagnosed multiple myeloma (NDMM), using minimal residual disease (MRD) by next-generation sequencing (NGS) to inform the use and duration of Dara-KRd post-autologous hematopoietic cell transplantation (AHCT) and treatment cessation in patients with two consecutive MRD-negative assessments.

Methods: This multicenter, single-arm, phase II trial enrolled patients with NDMM with planed enrichment for high-risk cytogenetic abnormalities (HRCAs). Patients received Dara-KRd induction, AHCT, and Dara-KRd consolidation, according to MRD status. MRD was evaluated by NGS at the end of induction, post-AHCT, and every four cycles (maximum of eight cycles) of consolidation. Primary end point was achievement of MRD negativity (< 10). Patients with two consecutive MRD-negative assessments entered treatment-free MRD surveillance.

Results: Among 123 participants, 43% had none, 37% had 1, and 20% had 2+ HRCA. Median age was 60 years (range, 36-79 years), and 96% had MRD trackable by NGS. Median follow-up was 25.1 months. Overall, 80% of patients reached MRD negativity (78%, 82%, and 79% for patients with 0, 1, and 2+ HRCA, respectively), 66% reached MRD < 10, and 71% reached two consecutive MRD-negative assessments during therapy, entering treatment-free surveillance. Two-year progression-free survival was 87% (91%, 97%, and 58% for patients with 0, 1, and 2+ HRCA, respectively). Cumulative incidence of MRD resurgence or progression 12 months after cessation of therapy was 4%, 0%, and 27% for patients with 0, 1, or 2+ HRCA, respectively. Most common serious adverse events were pneumonia (6%) and venous thromboembolism (3%).

Conclusion: Dara-KRd, AHCT, and MRD response-adapted consolidation leads to high rate of MRD negativity in NDMM. For patients with 0 or 1 HRCA, this strategy creates the opportunity of MRD surveillance as an alternative to indefinite maintenance.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1200/JCO.21.01935DOI Listing
December 2021

Comparison of Cilta-cel, an Anti-BCMA CAR-T Cell Therapy, Versus Conventional Treatment in Patients With Relapsed/Refractory Multiple Myeloma.

Clin Lymphoma Myeloma Leuk 2021 Oct 30. Epub 2021 Oct 30.

Department of Medicine, Division of Hematology and Oncology, Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, WI.

Background: In the single-arm, phase 1b/2 CARTITUDE-1 study, ciltacabtagene autoleucel (cilta-cel), an anti-B-cell maturation antigen chimeric antigen receptor T-cell (CAR-T) therapy, showed encouraging efficacy in US patients with multiple myeloma (MM) who previously received an immunomodulatory drug, proteasome inhibitor, and anti-CD38 monoclonal antibody (triple-class exposed).

Patients And Methods: A dataset of US patients refractory to an anti-CD38 monoclonal antibody (MAMMOTH) was used to identify patients who would meet eligibility for CARTITUDE-1 and received subsequent non-CAR-T therapy. The intent-to-treat (ITT) population in CARTITUDE-1 included patients who underwent apheresis (N = 113); the modified ITT (mITT) population was the subset who received cilta-cel (n = 97). Corresponding populations were identified from the MAMMOTH dataset: ITT population (n = 190) and mITT population of patients without progression/death within 47 days (median apheresis-to-cilta-cel infusion time) from onset of therapy (n = 122). Using 1:1 nearest neighbor propensity score matching to control for selected baseline covariates, 95 and 69 patients in CARTITUDE-1 ITT and mITT populations, respectively, were matched to MAMMOTH patients.

Results: In ITT cohorts of CARTITUDE-1 vs. MAMMOTH, improved overall response rate (ORR; 84% vs. 28% [P < .001]) and longer progression-free survival (PFS; hazard ratio [HR], 0.11 [95% confidence interval (CI), 0.05-0.22]) and overall survival (OS; HR, 0.20 [95% CI, 0.10-0.39]) were observed. Similar results were seen in mITT cohorts of CARTITUDE-1 vs. MAMMOTH (ORR: 96% vs. 30% [P < .001]; PFS: HR, 0.02 [95% CI, 0.01-0.14]; OS: HR, 0.05 [95% CI, 0.01-0.22]) and with alternative matching methods.

Conclusion: Cilta-cel yielded significantly improved outcomes versus real-world therapies in triple-class exposed patients with relapsed/refractory MM.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.clml.2021.10.013DOI Listing
October 2021

Once weekly selinexor, carfilzomib and dexamethasone in carfilzomib non-refractory multiple myeloma patients.

Br J Cancer 2021 Nov 20. Epub 2021 Nov 20.

University of Rochester Medical College, Rochester, NY, USA.

Background: Proteasome inhibitors (PIs), including carfilzomib, potentiate the activity of selinexor, a novel, first-in-class, oral selective inhibitor of nuclear export (SINE) compound, in preclinical models of multiple myeloma (MM).

Methods: The safety, efficacy, maximum-tolerated dose (MTD) and recommended phase 2 dose (RP2D) of selinexor (80 or 100 mg) + carfilzomib (56 or 70 mg/m) + dexamethasone (40 mg) (XKd) once weekly (QW) was evaluated in patients with relapsed refractory MM (RRMM) not refractory to carfilzomib.

Results: Thirty-two patients, median prior therapies 4 (range, 1-8), were enrolled. MM was triple-class refractory in 38% of patients and 53% of patients had high-risk cytogenetics del(17p), t(4;14), t(14;16) and/or gain 1q. Common treatment-related adverse events (all/Grade 3) were thrombocytopenia 72%/47% (G3 and G4), nausea 72%/6%, anaemia 53%/19% and fatigue 53%/9%, all expected and manageable with supportive care and dose modifications. MTD and RP2D were identified as selinexor 80 mg, carfilzomib 56 mg/m, and dexamethasone 40 mg, all QW. The overall response rate was 78% including 14 (44%) ≥ very good partial responses. Median progression-free survival was 15 months.

Conclusions: Weekly XKd is highly effective and well-tolerated. These data support further investigation of XKd in patients with MM.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41416-021-01608-2DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8605887PMC
November 2021

Allogeneic Transplantation to Treat Therapy-Related Myelodysplastic Syndrome and Acute Myelogenous Leukemia in Adults.

Transplant Cell Ther 2021 Nov 21;27(11):923.e1-923.e12. Epub 2021 Aug 21.

Section of Bone Marrow Transplant and Cell Therapy, Rush University Medical Center, Chicago, Illinois.

Patients who develop therapy-related myeloid neoplasm, either myelodysplastic syndrome (t-MDS) or acute myelogenous leukemia (t-AML), have a poor prognosis. An earlier Center for International Blood and Marrow Transplant Research (CIBMTR) analysis of 868 allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantations (allo-HCTs) performed between 1990 and 2004 showed a 5-year overall survival (OS) and disease-free survival (DFS) of 22% and 21%, respectively. Modern supportive care, graft-versus-host disease prophylaxis, and reduced-intensity conditioning (RIC) regimens have led to improved outcomes. Therefore, the CIBMTR analyzed 1531 allo-HCTs performed in adults with t-MDS (n = 759) or t-AML (n = 772) between and 2000 and 2014. The median age was 59 years (range, 18 to 74 years) for the patients with t-MDS and 52 years (range, 18 to 77 years) for those with t-AML. Twenty-four percent of patients with t-MDS and 11% of those with t-AML had undergone a previous autologous (auto-) HCT. A myeloablative conditioning (MAC) regimen was used in 49% of patients with t-MDS and 61% of patients with t-AML. Nonrelapse mortality at 5 years was 34% (95% confidence interval [CI], 30% to 37%) for patients with t-MDS and 34% (95% CI, 30% to 37%) for those with t-AML. Relapse rates at 5 years in the 2 groups were 46% (95% CI, 43% to 50%) and 43% (95% CI, 40% to 47%). Five-year OS and DFS were 27% (95% CI, 23% to 31%) and 19% (95% CI, 16% to 23%), respectively, for patients with t-MDS and 25% (95% CI, 22% to 28%) and 23% (95% CI, 20% to 26%), respectively, for those with t-AML. In multivariate analysis, OS and DFS were significantly better in young patients with low-risk t-MDS and those with t-AML undergoing HCT with MAC while in first complete remission, but worse for those with previous auto-HCT, higher-risk cytogenetics or Revised International Prognostic Scoring System score, and a partially matched unrelated donor. Relapse remains the major cause of treatment failure, with little improvement seen over the past 2 decades. These data mandate caution when recommending allo-HCT in these conditions and indicate the need for more effective antineoplastic approaches before and after allo-HCT.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jtct.2021.08.010DOI Listing
November 2021

Outcomes with CD34-Selected Stem Cell Boost for Poor Graft Function after Allogeneic Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis.

Transplant Cell Ther 2021 10 18;27(10):877.e1-877.e8. Epub 2021 Jul 18.

Division of Hematologic Malignancies & Cellular Therapeutics, University of Kansas Medical Center, Kansas City, Kansas. Electronic address:

Poor graft function (PGF) is a life-threatening complication after allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (allo-HSCT) characterized by multilineage cytopenia in the absence of mixed donor chimerism (<95% donor), relapse, or severe graft-versus-host disease (GVHD). We present a systemic review and meta-analysis aimed at assessing the outcomes with CD34-selected stem cell boost (SCB) for PGF in adult allo-HSCT recipients. We screened a total of 1753 records identified from 4 databases (PubMed, Embase, Cochrane, and ClinicalTrials.gov) following the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analysis (PRISMA) guidelines, using the search terms "hematological malignancies," "hematopoietic stem cell transplantation," "CD34 antigen(s)," "graft failure," and "poor graft function," from the date of inception to January 2021. After excluding review, duplicate, and nonrelevant articles, we included 7 studies reporting outcomes following administration of CD34-selected SCB for PGF after allo-HSCT, including hematologic complete response (CR) and overall response rate (ORR), GVHD, and overall survival (OS). Quality evaluation was done using the National Institutes of Health quality assessment tool. Pooled analysis was done using the R 'meta' package, and proportions with 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were computed. The inter-study variance was calculated using the Der Simonian-Laird estimator. We identified 209 patients who received CD34-selected SCB for PGF after allo-HSCT. The median age was 49 years (range, 18 to 69 years), and 61% were men. Primary graft sources included peripheral blood stem cells (72%) and bone marrow (28%). Donor types were matched sibling (37%), matched unrelated (36%), mismatched unrelated (22%), and haploidentical donors (5%). The median time from allo-HSCT to SCB was 138 days (range, 113 to 450 days). The median SCB dose was 3.45 × 10 CD34 cells/kg (range, 3.1 to 4.9 × 10 cells/kg). CR and ORR were 72% (95% CI, 63% to 79%; I = 26%) and 80% (95% CI, 74% to 85%; I = 0%), respectively. After a median follow-up of 42 months (range, 30 to 77 months), the actuarial survival rate was 54% (95% CI, 47% to 61%; I = 0%). OS ranged from 80% at 1 year to 40% at 9 years. The incidences of acute and chronic GVHD after SCB were 17% (95% CI, 13% to 23%; I = 0%) and 18% (95% CI, 8% to 34%; I = 76%), respectively. Nonrelapse mortality was reported in 42 patients, with a pooled rate of 27% (95% CI, 17% to 40; I = 59%), and death due to relapse was reported in 25 patients, with a pooled rate of 17% (95% CI, 11% to 23%; I = 0%). Our data show that CD34-selected SCB improves outcomes after PGF post allo-HSCT with an acceptable toxicity profile. The literature lacks high-quality randomized evidence, and there remains an unmet need for prospective studies to address the optimal dosing and manipulation of SCB. © 2021 American Society for Transplantation and Cellular Therapy. Published by Elsevier Inc.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jtct.2021.07.012DOI Listing
October 2021

Management of belantamab mafodotin-associated corneal events in patients with relapsed or refractory multiple myeloma (RRMM).

Blood Cancer J 2021 05 26;11(5):103. Epub 2021 May 26.

University of Chicago Medical Center, Chicago, IL, USA.

Belantamab mafodotin (belamaf) demonstrated deep and durable responses in patients with heavily pretreated relapsed or refractory multiple myeloma (RRMM) in DREAMM-2 (NCT03525678). Corneal events, specifically keratopathy (including superficial punctate keratopathy and/or microcyst-like epithelial changes (MECs), eye examination findings with/without symptoms), were common, consistent with reports from other antibody-drug conjugates. Given the novel nature of corneal events in RRMM management, guidelines are required for their prompt identification and appropriate management. Eye examination findings from DREAMM-2 and insights from hematology/oncology investigators and ophthalmologists, including corneal specialists, were collated and used to develop corneal event management guidelines. The following recommendations were formulated: close collaboration among hematologist/oncologists and eye care professionals is needed, in part, to provide optimal care in relation to the belamaf benefit-risk profile. Patients receiving belamaf should undergo eye examinations before and during every treatment cycle and promptly upon worsening of symptoms. Severity of corneal events should be determined based on corneal examination findings and changes in best-corrected visual acuity. Treatment decisions, including dose modifications, should be based on the most severe finding present. These guidelines are recommended for the assessment and management of belamaf-associated ocular events to help mitigate ocular risk and enable patients to continue to experience a clinical benefit with belamaf.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41408-021-00494-4DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8155129PMC
May 2021

Progress in the Management of Smoldering Multiple Myeloma.

Curr Hematol Malig Rep 2021 04 13;16(2):172-182. Epub 2021 May 13.

University of Wisconsin Carbone Cancer Center, 600 Highland Ave, Madison, WI, 3792, USA.

Purpose Of Review: Smoldering multiple myeloma (SMM) is defined as an asymptomatic clonal proliferation of pre-malignant plasma cells and an increased risk of progression to multiple myeloma (MM) relative to monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance. Whether patients with SMM should be treated prior to development of symptomatic disease is fiercely debated and is a highly active area of research.

Recent Findings: The ECOG E3A06 study demonstrated that early treatment with lenalidomide significantly reduced the risk of progression to MM compared to observation in patients with high risk SMM. The IMWG recently validated a risk stratification model to include cytogenetics and a personalized risk calculator for individual patients. Beyond this, molecular genomic aberrations and immunological phenomena that promote progression from asymptomatic disease to MM have been recently characterized and may help to more precisely identify patients who are most suitable for early intervention. As highly effective and tolerable therapies for plasma cell disorders evolve, the field is approaching a paradigm shift that involves the adoption of intervention for patients with SMM who are at high risk for progression to symptomatic myeloma in order to prevent morbidity and mortality. This review highlights our current understanding of the biology of patients with SMM, clarifies the rationale for early intervention, and summarizes early results of various treatment strategies for patients with high-risk smoldering myeloma.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11899-021-00623-7DOI Listing
April 2021

The evaluation and management of monoclonal gammopathy of renal significance and monoclonal gammopathy of neurological significance.

Am J Hematol 2021 07 25;96(7):846-853. Epub 2021 Mar 25.

Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota, USA.

Despite the benign nature of monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance (MGUS), mounting data are associating MGUS with the development of organ dysfunction, specifically monoclonal gammopathy of renal significance (MGRS) and monoclonal gammopathy of neurological significance (MGNS), which could be associated with substantial morbidity. Emerging evidence suggests that patients with MGRS and MGNS could benefit from treatments used for myeloma, Waldenström macroglobulinemia, or chronic lymphocytic leukemia, depending on the underlying pathology. However, the treatment of MGRS and MGNS is not standardized, and potentially effective therapies might not be reimbursed because these conditions do not formally meet the criteria for malignant processes. The present review aims at establishing standards for the evaluation and management of MGRS and MGNS, which can facilitate the diagnosis of and provide therapeutic options for treating practitioners and patients affected by these conditions. The careful design and execution of clinical trials for patients with MGRS and MGNS are positively encouraged.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ajh.26155DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8252623PMC
July 2021

Targeted treatment of multiple myeloma with a radioiodinated small molecule radiopharmaceutical.

Leuk Lymphoma 2021 06 27;62(6):1518-1521. Epub 2021 Jan 27.

Department of Pediatrics, School of Medicine and Public Health, Carbone Cancer Center, University of Wisconsin, Madison, WI, USA.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/10428194.2021.1876858DOI Listing
June 2021

Clinical effects and applications of the gut microbiome in hematologic malignancies.

Cancer 2021 03 28;127(5):679-687. Epub 2020 Dec 28.

Section of Hematology/Oncology and Bone Marrow Transplantation, Department of Medicine, University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health, Madison, Wisconsin.

The gut microbiome and its effects on host immunity have exciting implications for cancer prognosis and therapy. Examples in allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (allo-SCT) demonstrate the role of the gut microbiome as a biomarker for clinical outcomes, and animal models demonstrate how microbiota manipulation may augment therapeutic responses. There are multiple mechanisms that gut microbiota may have in affecting distant tumor environments, including control of cytokine release, dendritic cell activation, and T-cell lymphocyte stimulation. Recently, there has been a marked interest in understanding interactions between host and microbiome in hematologic malignancies. This review summarizes the current understanding of the gut microbiome and its impact on leukemia, lymphoma, multiple myeloma, and allo-SCT and highlights several broad methods for targeting the gut microbiome in therapeutic trials.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/cncr.33400DOI Listing
March 2021

Multiple Myeloma, Version 3.2021, NCCN Clinical Practice Guidelines in Oncology.

J Natl Compr Canc Netw 2020 12 2;18(12):1685-1717. Epub 2020 Dec 2.

28National Comprehensive Cancer Network.

Multiple myeloma is a malignant neoplasm of plasma cells that accumulate in bone marrow, leading to bone destruction and marrow failure. This manuscript discusses the management of patients with solitary plasmacytoma, smoldering multiple myeloma, and newly diagnosed multiple myeloma.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.6004/jnccn.2020.0057DOI Listing
December 2020

Flat-dose granulocyte colony-stimulating factor evaluation after autologous hematopoietic stem cell transplant in multiple myeloma patients: Does one dose fit all?

J Oncol Pharm Pract 2021 Oct 25;27(7):1716-1722. Epub 2020 Oct 25.

School of Medicine and Public Health, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, USA.

Introduction: The current recommended granulocyte-colony stimulating factor (G-CSF) dose after autologous hematopoietic stem cell transplant (autoHSCT) in multiple myeloma patients is 5 mcg/kg/day administered subcutaneously until engraftment. Recently, our institution changed practice from weight-based to flat-dose G-CSF. The purpose of this study was to assess the impact of flat-dose G-CSF on time to engraftment among multiple myeloma patients of different weight groups.

Methods: Retrospective chart review was completed for adult patients with multiple myeloma who underwent autoHSCT from March 2018 through August 2019. Data collected included time to neutrophil engraftment, total length of hospitalization, length of stay post-transplant, time to platelet engraftment, use of intravenous fluconazole or acyclovir, parenteral nutrition use, incidence of febrile neutropenia, antibiotic use, and death. Differences in outcomes were compared between patients ≤80 kg versus those >80 kg. A secondary analysis was completed for patients ≤100 kg versus those >100 kg.

Results: There was no difference in time to neutrophil engraftment between weight groups (≤80 kg versus >80 kg: median = 12 days, p = 0.22; ≤100 kg versus >100 kg: median = 12 days, p = 0.52). There was a significant difference in intravenous fluconazole and acyclovir use between groups, with more use in the lower weight groups (≤80 kg versus >80 kg: 12 patients versus 10 patients p = 0.02; ≤100 kg versus >100 kg: 19 patients versus 3 patients p = 0.04). No significant differences were found for any other outcomes.

Conclusion: Utilizing a flat-dose of G-CSF for patients after autoHSCT does not appear to negatively affect patient outcomes. Institutions may benefit from using the 300 mcg dose of G-CSF for multiple myeloma patients after autoHSCT.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/1078155220968611DOI Listing
October 2021

Impact of the Affordable Care Act on Timeliness to Treatment for Patients With Multiple Myeloma.

Anticancer Res 2020 Oct;40(10):5727-5734

Division of Hematology-Oncology, Mayo Clinic, Jacksonville, FL, U.S.A.

Background/aim: To examine the impact of ACA and the association of socioeconomic factors on delay in initial treatment for multiple myeloma (MM).

Patients And Methods: Patients diagnosed with MM between 2004-2016 were identified in the National Cancer Database (NCDB). Time-to-initial treatment (TTI) was defined as the number of days from diagnosis to initial therapy. Patients were classified into quartiles and those belonging to the fourth quartile for TTI constituted the delayed treatment group. Study period was divided into pre-ACA and post-ACA using 2010 as the cut-off.

Results: A total of 65,723 patients met the eligibility criteria. Median TTI was 13 (IQR=5-27) days. Racial-ethnic minorities were associated with delayed-TTI. Delayed treatment was more likely for Hispanics pre-ACA but not post-ACA, while non-Hispanic Blacks (NHB) were more likely to have delayed treatment both, pre- and post-ACA.

Conclusion: While ACA has been shown to help mitigate healthcare disparities in certain cancer diagnoses, the study suggests that the effect is still limited among MM patients.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.21873/anticanres.14587DOI Listing
October 2020

African Americans with translocation t(11;14) have superior survival after autologous hematopoietic cell transplantation for multiple myeloma in comparison with Whites in the United States.

Cancer 2020 01 23;127(1):82-92. Epub 2020 Sep 23.

Division of Hematological Malignancy and Cellular Therapeutics, University of Kansas Health System, Kansas City, Kansas.

Background: Multiple myeloma (MM) with the translocation t(11;14) may have inferior outcomes in comparison with other standard-risk MM, and it has been suggested to portend a worse prognosis in African Americans in comparison with Whites. This study used the Center for International Blood and Marrow Transplant Research (CIBMTR) database to examine the impact of t(11;14) on the clinical outcomes of patients with MM of African American and White descent.

Methods: This study evaluated 3538 patients who underwent autologous hematopoietic cell transplantation (autoHCT) for MM from 2008 to 2016 and were reported to the CIBMTR. Patients were analyzed in 4 groups: African Americans with t(11;14) (n = 117), African Americans without t(11;14) (n = 968), Whites with t(11;14) (n = 266), and Whites without t(11;14) (n = 2187).

Results: African Americans with t(11;14) were younger, had lower Karnofsky scores, and had more advanced stage MM with a higher Hematopoietic Cell Transplantation-Comorbidity Index (HCT-CI). Fewer African Americans with t(11;14) (21%) had a coexistent high-risk marker in comparison with Whites with t(11;14) (27%). In a multivariate analysis, race and t(11;14) had no association with progression-free survival. However, overall survival was superior among African Americans with t(11;14) in comparison with Whites with t(11;14) (hazard ratio, 0.53; 95% confidence interval, 0.30-0.93; P = .03). Survival was also associated with female sex, stage, time from diagnosis to transplant, a low HCT-CI, and receipt of maintenance.

Conclusions: Race may have a differential impact on the survival of patients with t(11;14) MM who undergo autoHCT and needs to be further studied.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/cncr.33208DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7736245PMC
January 2020

Comparison of salvage chemotherapy regimens and prognostic significance of minimal residual disease in relapsed/refractory acute myeloid leukemia.

Leuk Lymphoma 2021 01 19;62(1):158-166. Epub 2020 Sep 19.

Division of Hematology/Oncology, Department of Medicine, Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, WI, USA.

We compared the outcomes of salvage chemotherapy in 146 patients with relapsed (57.5%) or refractory (42.5%) AML who received CLAG-M (51%), MEC (39%) or CLAG (10%). Minimal residual disease (MRD) was assessed by flow cytometry. Bivariate, Kaplan-Meier, and Cox regression analyses were conducted. Complete remission (CR) rate of 46% (CLAG-M 54% versus MEC/CLAG 40%,  = .045) was observed with MRD-negative CR of 33% (CLAG-M 39% versus MEC/CLAG 22%,  = .042). Median overall survival (OS) was 9.7 months; the longest OS occurred with CLAG-M (13.3, 95%CI 2.4-24.3) versus MEC (6.9, 95%CI 2.9-10.9) or CLAG (6.2, 95%CI 2.4-12.6) ( = .025). When adjusted for age, gender, relapsed/refractory AML, poor risk AML, MRD, chemotherapy and transplant, CLAG-M (HR 0.63, 95% CI 0.40-0.98,  = .042), MRD-negativity (HR 0.15, 95% CI 0.07-0.30,  < .001) and transplant (HR 0.22, 95% CI 0.13-0.39,  < .001) were associated with higher OS. Our findings confirm that CLAG-M is a reasonable salvage regimen for RR-AML followed by transplant.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/10428194.2020.1821009DOI Listing
January 2021

International harmonization in performing and reporting minimal residual disease assessment in multiple myeloma trials.

Leukemia 2021 01 11;35(1):18-30. Epub 2020 Aug 11.

Division of Hematology/Oncology, Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, WI, USA.

Minimal residual disease (MRD) assessment is incorporated in an increasing number of multiple myeloma (MM) clinical trials as a correlative analysis, an endpoint or even as a determinant of subsequent therapy. There is substantial heterogeneity across clinical trials in how MRD is assessed and reported, creating challenges for data interpretation and for the design of subsequent studies. We convened an international panel of MM investigators to harmonize how MRD should be assessed and reported in MM clinical trials. The panel provides consensus on which MM trials should include MRD, the recommended time points for MRD assessment, and expected analytical validation for MRD assays. We subsequently outlined parameters for reporting MRD results implementing the intention-to-treat principle. The panel provides guidance regarding the incorporation of newer peripheral blood-based and imaging-based approaches to detection of residual disease. Recommendations are summarized in 13 consensus statements that should be followed by sponsors, investigators, editors, and reviewers engaged in designing, performing, and interpreting MM trials.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41375-020-01012-4DOI Listing
January 2021

Corneal Epithelial Findings in Patients with Multiple Myeloma Treated with Antibody-Drug Conjugate Belantamab Mafodotin in the Pivotal, Randomized, DREAMM-2 Study.

Ophthalmol Ther 2020 Dec 25;9(4):889-911. Epub 2020 Jul 25.

University of Chicago Medical Center, Chicago, IL, USA.

Introduction: Patients with relapsed or refractory multiple myeloma (RRMM) represent an unmet clinical need. Belantamab mafodotin (belamaf; GSK2857916) is a first-in-class antibody-drug conjugate (ADC; or immunoconjugate) that delivers a cytotoxic payload, monomethyl auristatin F (MMAF), to myeloma cells. In the phase II DREAMM-2 study (NCT03525678), single-agent belamaf (2.5 mg/kg) demonstrated clinically meaningful anti-myeloma activity (overall response rate 32%) in patients with heavily pretreated disease. Microcyst-like epithelial changes (MECs) were common, consistent with reports from other MMAF-containing ADCs.

Methods: Corneal examination findings from patients in DREAMM-2 were reviewed, and the clinical descriptions and accompanying images (slit lamp microscopy and in vivo confocal microscopy [IVCM]) of representative events were selected. A literature review on corneal events reported with other ADCs was performed.

Results: In most patients receiving single-agent belamaf (72%; 68/95), MECs were observed by slit lamp microscopy early in treatment (69% had their first event by dose 4). However, IVCM revealed hyperreflective material. Blurred vision (25%) and dry eye (15%) were commonly reported symptoms. Management of MECs included dose delays (47%)/reductions (25%), with few patients discontinuing due to MECs (1%). The first event resolved in most patients (grade ≥2 MECs and visual acuity [each 77%], blurred vision [67%], and dry eye [86%]), with no reports of permanent vision loss to date. A literature review confirmed that similar MECs were reported with other ADCs; however, event management strategies varied. The pathophysiology of MECs is unclear, though the ADC cytotoxic payload may contribute to on- or off-target effects on corneal epithelial cells.

Conclusion: Single-agent belamaf represents a new treatment option for patients with RRMM. As with other ADCs, MECs were observed and additional research is warranted to determine their pathophysiology. A multidisciplinary approach, involving close collaboration between eye care professionals and hematologist/oncologists, is needed to determine appropriate diagnosis and management of these patients.

Trial Registration: ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier, NCT03525678.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s40123-020-00280-8DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7708586PMC
December 2020

Expression of NrasQ61R and MYC transgene in germinal center B cells induces a highly malignant multiple myeloma in mice.

Blood 2021 01;137(1):61-74

McArdle Laboratory for Cancer Research and.

NRAS Q61 mutations are prevalent in advanced/relapsed multiple myeloma (MM) and correlate with poor patient outcomes. Thus, we generated a novel MM model by conditionally activating expression of endogenous NrasQ61R and an MYC transgene in germinal center (GC) B cells (VQ mice). VQ mice developed a highly malignant MM characterized by a high proliferation index, hyperactivation of extracellular signal-regulated kinase and AKT signaling, impaired hematopoiesis, widespread extramedullary disease, bone lesions, kidney abnormalities, preserved programmed cell death protein 1 and T-cell immunoreceptor with immunoglobulin and immunoreceptor tyrosine-based inhibition motif domain immune-checkpoint pathways, and expression of human high-risk MM gene signatures. VQ MM mice recapitulate most of the biological and clinical features of human advanced/high-risk MM. These MM phenotypes are serially transplantable in syngeneic recipients. Two MM cell lines were also derived to facilitate future genetic manipulations. Combination therapies based on MEK inhibition significantly prolonged the survival of VQ mice with advanced-stage MM. Our study provides a strong rationale to develop MEK inhibition-based therapies for treating advanced/relapsed MM.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1182/blood.2020007156DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7808014PMC
January 2021

Reduction in oral mucositis severity using a topical vasoconstrictor: A case report of three bone marrow transplant patients.

Integr Cancer Sci Ther 2018 Dec 29;5(6). Epub 2018 Nov 29.

Wisconsin Institutes of Medical Research, University of Wisconsin-Madison, USA.

Background: Grade 3 oral mucositis (OM) is historically observed in >90% of bone marrow transplant patients who received the cyclophosphamide + total body irradiation (CY+TBI) conditioning regimen. It was previously shown that orotopically applied adrenergic vasoconstrictor prevented up to 100% of radiation-induced oral mucositis in two preclinical animal models.

Methods: drenergic vasoconstrictor (i.e., phenylephrine in an aqueous-alcohol NG11-1 formulation) was orotopically applied to three patients (ages 24-29) who received the CY+TBI conditioning regimen; they were compared to five matched controls who received no orotopical vasoconstrictor. All patients received the CY+TBI conditioning regimen for acute lymphoblastic leukemia within the University of Wisconsin Adult Bone Marrow Transplant Program. Over the seven-day Cy+TBI conditioning regimen, 20 min before each treatment, either radiation or chemotherapy, vasoconstrictor was applied topically to the oral cavity, and patients then received either 1.5 Gy whole-body radiation or IV cyclophosphamide.

Results: OM severity was scored over a three-week period using: i) physican assessments, ii) daily photos of the oral cavity, iii) oral pain and oral function score sheets, and iv) recorded narcotic consumption. Both "Grade 3 OM" duration and "any OM" duration in vasoconstrictor-treated patients were substantially lower than for the five control patients. Though nasogastric tube or total parenteral nutrition were used in 3 out of 5 control patients, there was no use of these supportive care measures in the three vasoconstrictor-treated patients.

Conclusion: Orotopically applied NG11-1 vasoconstrictor formulation substantially reduced the incidence and severity of "Grade 3" and "any" oral mucositis when compared to matched control patients, all of whom received the same CY+TBI conditioning regimen. The liquid orotopical formulation was easily tolerated by patients both in its ease of use and lack of side effects.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.15761/ICST.1000293DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6907163PMC
December 2018

NCCN Guidelines Insights: Multiple Myeloma, Version 1.2020.

J Natl Compr Canc Netw 2019 10;17(10):1154-1165

National Comprehensive Cancer Network.

The NCCN Guidelines for Multiple Myeloma provide recommendations for diagnosis, workup, treatment, follow-up, and supportive care for patients with monoclonal gammopathy of renal significance, solitary plasmacytoma, smoldering myeloma, and multiple myeloma. These NCCN Guidelines Insights highlight some of the important updates and changes in the 1.2020 version of the NCCN Guidelines for Multiple Myeloma.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.6004/jnccn.2019.0049DOI Listing
October 2019

Bone Marrow Stromal Cells Transcriptionally Repress ESR1 but Cannot Overcome Constitutive ESR1 Mutant Activity.

Endocrinology 2019 10;160(10):2427-2440

Department of Oncology, McArdle Laboratory for Cancer Research, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, Wisconsin.

Estrogen receptor α (ER) is the target of endocrine therapies in ER-positive breast cancer (BC), but their therapeutic effectiveness diminishes with disease progression. Most metastatic BCs retain an ER-positive status, but ER expression levels are reduced. We asked how the bone tumor microenvironment (TME) regulates ER expression. We observed ESR1 mRNA and ER protein downregulation in BC cells treated with conditioned media (CM) from patient-derived, cancer-activated bone marrow stromal cells (BMSCs) and the BMSC cell line HS5. Decreases in ESR1 mRNA were attributed to decreases in nascent transcripts as well as decreased RNA polymerase II occupancy and H3K27Ac levels on the ESR1 promoter and/or distal enhancer (ENH1). Repression extended to neighboring genes of ESR1, including ARMT1 and SYNE1. Although ERK/MAPK signaling pathway can repress ER expression by other TME cell types, MAPK inhibition did not reverse decreases in ER expression by BMSC-CM. ESR1 mRNA and ER protein half-lives in MCF7 cells were unchanged by BMSC-CM treatment. Whereas ER phosphorylation was induced, ER activity was repressed by BMSC-CM as neither ER occupancy at known binding sites nor estrogen response element-luciferase activity was detected. BMSC-CM also repressed expression of ER target genes. In cells expressing the Y537S and D538G ESR1 mutations, BMSC-CM reduced ESR1, but expression of target genes PGR and TFF1 remained significantly elevated compared with that of control wild-type cells. These studies demonstrate that BMSCs can transcriptionally corepress ESR1 with neighboring genes and inhibit receptor activity, but the functional consequences of the BMSC TME can be limited by metastasis-associated ESR1 mutations.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1210/en.2019-00299DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6760314PMC
October 2019

Pentostatin, Cyclophosphamide, and Rituximab Followed by Alemtuzumab for Relapsed or Refractory Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia: A Phase 2 Trial of the ECOG-Acrin Cancer Research Group (E2903).

Acta Haematol 2019 23;142(4):224-232. Epub 2019 Jul 23.

Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, New York, New York, USA.

Patients with relapsed/refractory (R/R) chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) may benefit from salvage chemoimmunotherapy (CIT). To explore further the use of CIT in the pre-novel agent era, ECOG-ACRIN undertook a phase 2 trial (E2903) for R/R CLL utilizing pentostatin, cyclophosphamide, and rituximab (PCR) followed by a consolidation course of alemtuzumab. This trial enrolled 102 patients with a median age of 64 years. Treatment consisted of 6 cycles of PCR followed by alemtuzumab for either 4 or 18 weeks depending on the initial response to PCR. The overall response after PCR (complete remission, CR, nodular partial remission, nPR, and partial remission, PR) was 55%. Major responses (CR or nPR) were achieved in 6%. The median overall survival (OS) and the median progression-free survival were 28 and 12 months, respectively. The most serious nonlethal adverse events were myelosuppression, febrile neutropenia, fatigue, nausea, and hyponatremia. PCR is an effective and well-tolerated nucleoside-based regimen for heavily pretreated CLL patients with R/R disease. The addition of alemtuzumab to CLL patients with a minor response (PR) or stable disease did not result in a significant number of higher responses (CR or nPR) nor an improvement in OS.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1159/000500164DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6834875PMC
March 2020

Outcomes of patients with multiple myeloma refractory to CD38-targeted monoclonal antibody therapy.

Leukemia 2019 09 11;33(9):2266-2275. Epub 2019 Mar 11.

Division of Hematology/Oncology, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham, AL, USA.

The introduction of CD38-targeting monoclonal antibodies (CD38 MoABs), daratumumab and isatuximab, has significantly impacted the management of patients with multiple myeloma (MM). Outcomes of patients with MM refractory to CD38 MoABs have not been described. We analyzed outcomes of 275 MM patients at 14 academic centers with disease refractory to CD38 MoABs. Median interval between MM diagnosis and refractoriness to CD38 MoAB (T) was 50.1 months. The median overall survival (OS) from T for the entire cohort was 8.6 [95% C.I. 7.5-9.9] months, ranging from 11.2 months for patients not simultaneously refractory to an immunomodulatory (IMiD) agent and a proteasome inhibitor (PI) to 5.6 months for "penta-refractory" patients (refractory to CD38 MoAB, 2 PIs and 2 IMiDs). At least one subsequent treatment regimen was employed after T in 249 (90%) patients. Overall response rate to first regimen after T was 31% with median progression-free survival (PFS) and OS of 3.4 and 9.3 months, respectively. PFS was best achieved with combinations of carfilzomib and alkylator (median 5.7 months), and daratumumab and IMiD (median 4.5 months). Patients with MM refractory to CD38 MoAB have poor prognosis and this study provides benchmark for new therapies to be tested in this population.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41375-019-0435-7DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6820050PMC
September 2019

Granulocyte colony-stimulating factor utilization postautologous hematopoietic stem cell transplant in multiple myeloma patients: Does one size fit all?

J Oncol Pharm Pract 2019 Jul 11;25(5):1135-1141. Epub 2018 Jun 11.

3 School of Medicine and Public Health, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, WI, USA.

Purpose: To evaluate a single institution's experience with granulocyte colony-stimulating factor after autologous hematopoietic stem cell transplant in myeloma patients to identify populations that benefit most from granulocyte colony-stimulating factor administration.

Methods: Retrospective chart reviews were conducted on patients 18+ years with multiple myeloma that underwent autologous hematopoietic stem cell transplant at UW Health from January 2012 to May 2016. Data collection included demographics, length of stay, time to engraftment, Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group performance status score, and hematopoietic cell transplantation-comorbidity index. The primary outcome was days from transplant to engraftment, defined as absolute neutrophil count  > 500/mm for two consecutive days or absolute neutrophil count > 1000/mm once. A subset analysis was performed on patients whose date of engraftment was known.

Results: In total, 216 individual patients were included in the full cohort and 122 patients included in the subset analysis. Median time to engraftment between patients administered granulocyte colony-stimulating factor and the nongranulocyte colony-stimulating factor group was 12 versus 19 days (P < 0.001) in the full cohort and 12 versus 14 days (P < 0.001) in the subset analysis. The average length of stay posthematopoietic stem cell transplant in the granulocyte colony-stimulating factor group was 15 days versus 17 days in the nongranulocyte colony-stimulating factor group (P = 0.026) in the subset analysis. Additionally, no difference in time to engraftment was seen when stratified by age, Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group performance status score, or hematopoietic cell transplantation-comorbidity index.

Conclusion: Our study supports use of granulocyte colony-stimulating factor posthematopoietic stem cell transplant in myeloma patients to decrease time to engraftment and length of stay. Consideration should be given to utilization in all patients in this population posthematopoietic stem cell transplant. Further research is needed to identify the populations that benefit most from granulocyte colony-stimulating factor administration.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/1078155218781888DOI Listing
July 2019
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