Clofarabine plus low-dose cytarabine followed by clofarabine plus low-dose cytarabine alternating with decitabine in acute myeloid leukemia frontline therapy for older patients




Standard therapy for older patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) has a poor outcome. The authors have designed a combination of clofarabine plus low-dose cytarabine followed by a prolonged consolidation alternating with decitabine.


Sixty patients with a median age of 70 years (range, 60-81 years) with newly diagnosed AML were included. They received clofarabine 20 mg/m2 intravenously daily for 5 days plus cytarabine 20 mg subcutaneously twice daily for 10 days. Responding patients continued for up to 17 courses of consolidation therapy including decitabine.


Forty of 59 evaluable patients responded (66%). Complete remission rate was 58%. Median relapse-free survival (RFS) was 14.1 (95% confidence interval [CI], 6.9 to not estimable), and median overall survival (OS) was 12.7 months (95% CI, 8.8 to not estimable). Median OS of responding patients (complete response [CR]/CR with platelet count <100 × 109/L) was 24.2 months (95% CI, 17 to not estimable). Compared with a historical group of patients who received clofarabine plus low-dose cytarabine with a shorter consolidation, RFS was not statistically different. Induction mortality was low (7% at 8 weeks) and toxicities manageable.


Clofarabine plus low-dose cytarabine alternating with decitabine in consolidation is active in older patients with newly diagnosed AML. The benefits of a prolonged consolidation remain unproven. Cancer 2012. © 2012 American Cancer Society.