Essential thrombocythemia is well-known to transform to other myeloid disorders, such as leukemia; however, the risk for development of lymphoma is not as well studied. This case report discusses a 76-year-old man with a history of prefibrotic post-essential thrombocythemia myelofibrosis on ruxolitinib, who developed anemia, thrombocytopenia, and leukocytosis with peripheral blasts. Results of a bone marrow biopsy and PET and CT scans revealed stage IV leukemic diffuse large B-cell lymphoma. Several days after cessation of ruxolitinib, the patient developed fevers, hypotension, and low-grade disseminated intravascular coagulation, and subsequently developed spontaneous tumor lysis syndrome, which resulted in death. This case is unique in several aspects: it highlights the rare possibility of lymphomatous transformation of myeloproliferative disorders, an unusual presentation of lymphoma masquerading as leukemia, and the possibility of ruxolitinib withdrawal syndrome. Additionally, this case serves as a reminder that the use of novel therapies should be adopted after a thorough assessment of long-term risks, including those associated with abrupt withdrawal.
Vijaya Raj Bhatt, R. Gregory Bociek, Ji Yuan, Kai Fu, Timothy C. Greiner, Bhavana J. Dave, Sandeep K. Rajan and James O. Armitage
Matthew G. Fury, Eric Sherman, Donna Lisa, Neeraj Agarwal, Kenneth Algazy, Bruce Brockstein, Corey Langer, Dean Lim, Ranee Mehra, Sandeep K. Rajan, Susan Korte, Brynna Lipson, Furhan Yunus, Tawee Tanvetyanon, Stephanie Smith-Marrone, Kenneth Ng, Han Xiao, Sofia Haque and David G. Pfister
Cetuximab is typically administered on a weekly schedule for patients with recurrent or metastatic head and neck squamous cell cancer (HNSCC). This study explores cetuximab administered every 2 weeks (q2w). In this multicenter randomized prospective phase II study, eligible patients (≤2 prior cytotoxic chemotherapy regimens for recurrent or metastatic disease; ECOG performance status ≤2) were randomized to receive cetuximab q2w at 500 mg/m2 (Group A) or 750 mg/m2 (Group B). The primary end point was response rate (RECIST 1.0). Sixty-one patients were enrolled: 35 in Group A and 26 in Group B, which was closed early for lack of efficacy. Confirmed partial response rates were 11% for Group A (4/35) and 8% for Group B (2/26) according to intention to treat analysis. Partial responses occurred only among patients whose primary tumors were in the oral cavity or larynx. Median progression-free survival (PFS) and median overall survival (OS) were similar for both groups (PFS, 2.2 and 2.0 months; OS, 7.0 and 9.4 months; Groups A and B, respectively). The most common cetuximab-related adverse events (all grades) among treated subjects included rash, fatigue, and hypomagnesemia. Cetuximab, 500 mg/m2, q2w achieves similar efficacy as conventional dosing for patients with recurrent or metastatic HNSCC. Escalating the dose to 750 mg/m2 q2w offers no obvious therapeutic advantage.