John M. Timmerman, MD, discusses recent developments made in the treatment of patients with Hodgkin lymphoma.
John M. Timmerman, MD, an associate professor of medicine, UCLA Lymphoma Program, Division of Hematology & Oncology, Department of Medicine, University of California, Los Angeles, discusses recent developments made in the treatment of patients with Hodgkin lymphoma.
The ECHELON-1 trial showed that the addition of brentuximab vedotin (Adcetris) to standard chemotherapy for Hodgkin lymphoma can slightly improve progression-free survival, but with greater toxicity, explains Timmerman. Due to the toxicity, the regimen has not been widely adopted and longer follow-up is necessary, he adds.
Additionally, after seeing the efficacy of anti—PD-1 checkpoint inhibitors in Hodgkin lymphoma, researchers are asking whether they should be used in the frontline setting. Recently, a study looked at the addition of an anti–PD-1 antibody to chemotherapy and good responses were observed. However, there was some added toxicity and 1 death with the combination, says Timmerman. Therefore, he believes that checkpoint inhibitors should be reserved for patients with relapsed/refractory disease.