Preetesh Jain, MD, PhD, discusses the rationale to evaluate ibrutinib in combination with rituximab in mantle cell lymphoma.
Preetesh Jain, MD, PhD, clinical fellow in medical oncology at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, discusses the rationale to evaluate ibrutinib (Imbruvica) in combination with rituximab (Rituxan) in mantle cell lymphoma (MCL).
During the 2020 ASH Annual Meeting & Exposition, findings from a phase 2 clinical trial (NCT01880567) were presented, demonstrating high rates of clinical efficacy with the combination of ibrutinib and rituximab in transplant-ineligible, elderly patients with non-blastoid histology.
The rationale for this study was to determine whether a chemotherapy-free regimen would have utility in this patient population, says Jain. Currently, the field of MCL is shifting toward incorporating chemotherapy-free options due to the short- and long-term toxicities of chemotherapy, such as secondary malignancy, high infection risk, and myelosuppression.
The promise of a chemotherapy-free regimen, as well as the encouraging responses demonstrated with ibrutinib/rituximab, provided a basis to evaluate the combination among older patients with treatment-naïve, low-risk MCL, concludes Jain.