We reviewed the outcome of 671 patients 65 years of age or older with newly diagnosed acute myeloid leukemia (AML) treated at our institution between 2000 and 2010 with intensive chemotherapy (n = 557) or azacitidine- or decitabine-based therapy (n = 114). Both groups were balanced according to cytogenetics and performance status. The complete response rates with chemotherapy and epigenetic therapy were 42% and 28%, respectively (P = .001), and the 8-week mortality 18% and 11%, respectively (P = .075). Two-year relapse-free survival rates (28% vs 39%, P = .843) and median survival (6.7 vs 6.5 months, P = .413) were similar in the 2 groups. Multivariate analysis identified older age, adverse cytogenetics, poor performance status, elevated creatinine, peripheral blood and BM blasts, and hemoglobin, but not type of AML therapy, as independent prognostic factors for survival. No outcome differences were observed according to cytogenetics, FLT3 mutational status, age, or performance status by therapy type. Decitabine was associated with improved median overall survival compared with azacitidine (5.5 vs 8.8 months, respectively, P = .03). Survival after failure of intensive chemotherapy, azacitidine, or decitabine was more favorable in patients who had previously received decitabine (1.1 vs 0.9 vs 3.1 months, respectively, P = .109). The results of the present study show that epigenetic therapy is associated with similar survival rates as intensive chemotherapy in older patients with newly diagnosed AML. The studies reviewed are registered at www.clinicaltrials.gov as 2009-0172 (NCT00926731) and 2009-0217 (NCT00952588).
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cell Biology