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Wendtner, Clemens M.; Hallek, Michael; Fraser, Graeme A. M.; Michallet, Anne-Sophie; Hillmen, Peter; Dürig, Jan; Kalaycio, Matt; Gribben, John G.; Stilgenbauer, Stephan; Buhler, Andreas; Kipps, Thomas J.; Purse, Brendan; Zhang, Jennie; De Bedout, Sabine; Mei, Jay and Chanan-Khan, Asher (2016): Safety and efficacy of different lenalidomide starting doses in patients with relapsed or refractory chronic lymphocytic leukemia: results of an international multicenter double-blinded randomized phase II trial*. In: Leukemia & Lymphoma, Vol. 57, No. 6: pp. 1291-1299

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The objective of this study was to evaluate the safety and efficacy of different lenalidomide starting doses in patients with relapsed/refractory chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL). CLL patients were randomized to receive lenalidomide at initial doses of 5, 10, or 15mg/d (N=103). Doses were escalated by 5mg every 28-d up to a maximum of 25mg/d;dose reductions in up to 5mg decrements were permitted. The most common grade3 adverse events (AEs) were neutropenia and thrombocytopenia. Ten patients died during therapy (four deaths considered as related to lenalidomide);12 patients experienced second primary malignancies. The most common cause for treatment discontinuation was AEs. Overall response rates were similar across arms. Progression-free survival and overall survival rates were longer in patients who escalated treatment (to 15 or 20mg/d) versus those who did not. Lower starting doses allowed subsequent dose escalation of lenalidomide while maintaining an acceptable tolerability profile in patients with relapsed/refractory CLL.

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