Dr. Thompson on the Evolving Role of MRD Testing in CLL

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Meghan Thompson, MD, discusses the evolving role of minimal residual disease testing in chronic lymphocytic leukemia.

Meghan Thompson, MD, third-year fellow, Hematology and Medical Oncology, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, discusses the evolving role of minimal residual disease (MRD) testing in chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL).

The role of MRD testing has grown substantially in CLL in the past 5 years, Thompson says. Although MRD negativity is not typically a primary end point in clinical trials, more recent studies are incorporating it as a secondary end point, Thompson explains. As a result, significant data regarding how MRD negativity and MRD kinetics affect progression-free survival and patient outcomes have emerged, Thompson says.

However, routine MRD testing is not standard of care for patients with CLL and assay availability varies significantly between academic centers, community centers, and global centers, Thompson explains. As additional data emerge, centers are likely to adopt MRD testing as a routine clinical practice to guide therapy for patients with CLL, Thompson concludes.

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