Oncological outcome and recurrence pattern analysis after involved-field irradiation in combination with rituximab for early-stage nodal and extranodal follicular lymphoma


König L, et al. Strahlenther Onkol 2020.


PURPOSE: Combined radioimmunotherapy (RIT) in follicular lymphomas (FL) has shown promising treatment efficacy in the Mabthera® and Involved field Radiation (MIR) study. Aim of this study was to analyze treatment efficacy and recurrence patterns after RIT in early-stage nodal and extranodal FL.

METHODS: We reviewed 107 patients who were treated with combined RIT in two centers. Treatment consisted of 4 × rituximab followed by RIT with 4 × rituximab and involved field (IF) radiotherapy with 30/40 Gy. Median follow-up period was 71 months. In contrast to the MIR study, extranodal involvement and grade 3A histology were included in the analysis.

RESULTS: Extranodal involvement and grade 3A histology were present in 21.8% and 13.1%, respectively. Overall response rate (ORR) after 4 × rituximab, after completion of RIT, and after 6 months was 78.1%, 98.8%, and 98.8%, respectively, with increasing rates of complete remissions (CR). Predictive factors associated with superior PFS were tumor size, completely excised lymphomas, and response to first 4 × rituximab. 5‑year PFS rate was 87.3%, with mostly outfield recurrences (94.1%). Second-line treatment was effective, with 53.3% CR and 46.7% partial remissions (PR). 5‑year OS was 98.1%. RIT was tolerated well, with mainly grade 1-2 acute side effects.

CONCLUSION: The real-world efficacy of RIT is comparable with the results of the MIR study. Additionally, this analysis shows that extranodal involvement and grade 3A histology are not associated with inferior PFS.