Posterior reversible encephalopathy syndrome in neuroblastoma patients receiving anti-GD2 3F8 monoclonal antibody

Authors


Abstract

BACKGROUND

Posterior reversible encephalopathy syndrome (PRES) comprises clinical and radiologic findings with rapid onset and potentially dire consequences. Patients experience hypertension, seizures, headache, visual disturbance, and/or altered mentation. Magnetic resonance imaging reveals edematous changes in the brain (especially in the parietal and occipital lobes). In this report, the authors describe PRES associated with antidisialoganglioside (anti-GD2) monoclonal antibody (MoAb) immunotherapy, which is now standard for high-risk neuroblastoma but has not previously been implicated in PRES.

METHODS

Successive clinical trials using the anti-GD2 MoAb 3F8 (a murine immunoglobulin 3 MoAb specific for GD2) for patients with neuroblastoma involved multiple cycles of standard-dose 3F8 (SD-3F8) (20 mg/m2 daily for 5 days per cycle) or 2 cycles of high-dose 3F8 (HD-3F8) (80 mg/m2 daily for 5 days per cycle) followed by cycles of SD-3F8.

RESULTS

PRES was diagnosed in 5 of 215 patients (2.3%), including 3 of 160 (1.9%) who received SD-3F8 and 2 of 55 (3.6%) who received HD-3F8 (P = .6). All 5 patients had a rapid return to clinical-radiologic baseline. PRES occurred in 3 of 26 patients (11.5%) whose prior treatment included external-beam radiotherapy to the brain (2 of 6 patients status-post total body irradiation and 1 of 20 patients status-post craniospinal irradiation) compared with 2 of 189 patients (1.1%) who had not received prior brain irradiation (P = .01). Hypertension, which is strongly linked to PRES, reached grade 3 toxicity in 12 of 215 patients (5.6%), including the 5 patients with PRES and 7 patients without PRES.

CONCLUSIONS

Patients who receive anti-GD2 MoAb immunotherapy should be closely monitored for, and undergo urgent treatment or evaluation of, symptoms that may herald PRES (eg, hypertension or headaches). Prior brain irradiation may be a predisposing factor for PRES with this immunotherapy. Cancer 2013;119:2789–2795. © 2013 American Cancer Society.

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