The introduction of the United Kingdom Medical Research Council's 10th AML trial (MRC AML 10) protocol incorporating high-dose anthracycline therapy has improved outcome of children with acute myeloid leukemia (AML). In this study, we review the results of childhood AML therapy in a Singapore university hospital over the last 17 years emphasizing toxicity and outcome.
Retrospective analysis revealed 34 children with AML between 1988 and 2003. Prior to September 1996, therapy consisted of: POG-8498 (n = 10), others (n = 9). From September 1996, all but one of 15 children received MRC AML 10 treatment.
At the time of analysis, 17 had died from disease, and 17 patients were alive among whom 2 had relapsed. MRC AML 10-treated patients (n = 14) had significantly better 3-year overall, event-free, and disease-free survival (74% vs. 35%, 77% vs. 20%, 83% vs. 31%; P = 0.019, P = 0.002, and P = 0.010, respectively) and were likelier to achieve complete remission (CR) than non-MRC AML 10 patients (P = 0.102). Among patients who achieved CR, MRC AML 10-treated patients were significantly more likely to achieve CR after only one cycle of chemotherapy (P = 0.016). Hematologic toxicity was similar among the different regimens (P = 0.9).
These findings suggest that MRC AML 10 treatment results in significantly superior survival, without excess toxicity. Future studies should attempt to elucidate the relative importance of individual MRC AML 10 components and reduce the high cumulative anthracycline dose without compromising outcome. Pediatr Blood Cancer 2007;48:262–267. © 2006 Wiley-Liss, Inc.