Study confirms effective, less toxic alternative to standard treatment for adults with Burkitt lymphoma

In a new study, an alternative treatment regimen that is less toxic than standard dose-intensive chemotherapy was found to be highly effective for adults with Burkitt lymphoma across all age groups and independent of HIV status. In addition to being better tolerated, the regimen, called dose-adjusted (DA) EPOCH-R, is already an option for diffuse large B-cell lymphomas and can be administered in an outpatient setting.

The findings were published May 26, 2020, in the Journal of Clinical Oncology. The study was led by researchers in the Center for Cancer Research at the National Cancer Institute (NCI), part of the National Institutes of Health, and sponsored by NCI’s Cancer Therapy Evaluation Program. It was conducted at 22 research centers across the country. The DA-EPOCH-R regimen was originally developed by NCI researchers led by Wyndham Wilson, M.D., Ph.D., at the NIH Clinical Center in Bethesda, Maryland.

“We knew Burkitt lymphoma is curable with dose-intensive chemotherapy, but that treatment can be acutely toxic for adult patients,” said Mark Roschewski, M.D., of NCI’s Lymphoid Malignancies Branch, who was one of the lead authors on the study. “With this finding, we not only have a potentially curative treatment option for these patients that’s less toxic, but one that appears effective for most adults, including elderly patients and those with HIV and other comorbidities who might not be able to receive standard treatment.”

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This page was last updated on Friday, January 21, 2022