Dr. Eyre on BTK Inhibitors in Combination With Venetoclax for MCL

Toby Eyre, MBChB, MRCP

Toby Eyre, MCBhB, MRCP, consultant hematologist at Oxford University Hospitals NHS Trust, discusses the potential for BTK inhibitors to be used in combination with venetoclax (Venclexta) for the treatment of patients with mantle cell lymphoma (MCL).

Venetoclax has been extremely effective in patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia, and it is now being tested with BTK inhibitors in that space. The same thing is starting to happen in MCL, Eyre says. A previous phase I study showed an overall response rate of 75% and a progression-free survival of just under 14 months with venetoclax. Interestingly, similar data has been seen with ibrutinib (Imbruvica). Recent data was published looking at the combination in a small number of patients and it showed efficacy, particularly in terms of complete response rates and minimal residual disease–negativity. The natural next step, Eyre says, is to look at this combination further.

It remains to be seen what the tolerability will be for this combination. Venetoclax and ibrutinib have some overlapping toxicities like diarrhea, cytopenia, and neutropenia.
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