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Response-adapted intensification with cyclophosphamide, bortezomib, and dexamethasone compared with no intensification in patients with newly diagnosed multiple myeloma: subgroup analysis of the Myeloma XI trial

Nov 20, 2019

At diagnosis of myeloma, there can be significant intraclonal heterogeneity due to the accumulation of a variety of genetic lesions. 1In order to maximize the effect of induction therapy, and avoid selecting resistant tumor cell clones, the use of combination therapies has become the norm. 2In order to further deepen response, there are multi-step treatment strategies that may include induction followed by hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) and then a post-transplantation consolidation step. The Myeloma IX study found that patients with a complete response (CR) before HSCT demonstrated better progression-free survival (PFS) and overall survival (OS) than those without a CR. This demonstrates that perhaps there should be a pre-transplant treatment intensification rather than the more standard post-transplant consolidation. 3, 4

Graham Jackson, Newcastle University, UK, and colleagues have just published their results from the Myeloma XI trial ( NCT01554852). This open label, randomized, adaptive design, phase III trial was undertaken at 110 hospitals around the UK and included three randomizations: at induction, intensification, and at maintenance treatment. The publication in Lancet Haematologycovers the randomization to intensification treatment part of the study. 2A total of 583 patients with newly diagnosed multiple myeloma (NDMM), who had a suboptimal response to initial standard triplet induction treatment, were randomized to the intensification treatment and received either cyclophosphamide (C), bortezomib (V), and dexamethasone (d; CVd; n=289) or no treatment (n=294).

Dosing schedule

Patients in the CVd group received:

  • Oral C: 500mg (Days 1, 8, and 15)
  • Subcutaneous or intravenous V: 1.3mg/m 2(Days 1, 4, 8, and 11)
  • Oral d: 20mg (Days 1, 2, 4, 5, 8, 9, 11, and 12) for a maximum of 8 x 21-day cycles


All data shown is CVd vsno treatment.

  • Median follow-up after randomization: 29.7 months (interquartile range [IQR], 17.0–5)
  • Patients who had disease progression or died during the study: 131/289 (45%) vs170/294 (58%)
    • Patients who died during the study: 54/289 (18%) vs54/294 (19%)
  • Median PFS: 30 months (95% confidence interval [CI], 25–36) vs20 months (95% CI, 15–28), hazard ratio (HR) = 0.60 (95% CI, 0.48–0.75), p< 0.0001
  • Median PFS in transplantation-eligible patients: 48 months (95% CI, 35–not reached [NR]) vs28 months (95% CI, 22–33), HR = 0.50 (95% CI, 0.36–0.68), p< 0.0001
  • Median PFS in transplantation-ineligible patients: 20 months (95% CI, 15–23.7) vs9 months (95% CI, 6–15), HR = 0.73 (95% CI, 0.52–1.02), p= 0.061
  • Median OS was NR
  • Three-year OS: 77.3% (95% CI, 71·0–83·5) vs78·5% (95% CI, 72·3–84·6), HR = 0·98 (95% CI, 0·67–1·43), p= 0·93
  • At the time of randomization there were similar rates of minimal response, CR, very good partial response (VGPR), and stable or progressive disease across the two study groups
    • VGPR: 113/289 (39.1%) patients (95% CI, 33.4–44.9) vs40/289 (33.6%) patients (25·2–42·9)
    • CR: 10/289 (3·5%) patients (95% CI, 1·7–6·3) vs7/289 (5.9%) patients (2.4–11.7)
  • Median PFS of CVd intensification treatment was also beneficial across cytogenetic risk groups: standard risk HR = 0·45 (95% CI, 0·28–0·73), high-risk HR = 0·40 (95% CI, 0·21–0·76), and ultra­-high-risk HR = 0·18 (95% CI, 0·06–0·49)


  • Median number of CVd cycles: four (range 3–5)
    • There were 144/289 (50%) of patients in the CVd arm who had a dose modification:
      • Modified C: 58/289 (20%)
      • Modified V: 115/289 (40%)
      • Modified d: 74/289 (26%)
    • Serious adverse events were reported in 103/289 (37%) patients in the CVd group, with the most common being infection (42/289 [59%])

Graham Jackson and team concluded that the use of CVd intensification treatment significantly improved PFS when compared to no intensification in patients with NDMM who had a suboptimal response to the standard induction therapy. There was no improvement in OS.

There have been a number of other analyses from the Myeloma XI trial which have been summarized on the Multiple Myeloma Hub. They can be found here:

  1. Morgan G.J. et al.The genetic architecture of multiple myeloma. Nat Rev Cancer. 2012 Apr 12; 12(5):335–48. DOI: 10.1038/nrc3257
  2. Jackson G.H. et al.Response-adapted intensification with cyclophosphamide, bortezomib, and dexamethasone versus no intensification in patients with newly diagnosed multiple myeloma (Myeloma XI): a multicentre, open-label, randomised, phase 3 trial. Lancet Haematol.2019 Oct 14. DOI: 10.1016/S2352-3026(19)30167-X 
  3. Morgan G.J. et al. Cyclophosphamide, thalidomide, and dexamethasone (CTD) as initial therapy for patients with multiple myeloma unsuitable for autologous transplantation. Blood. 2011 Aug 4; 118(5):1231–1238. DOI: 10.12/blood-2011-02-338665
  4. Morgan G.J .et al.Cyclophosphamide, thalidomide, and dexamethasone as induction therapy for newly diagnosed multiple myeloma patients destined for autologous stem­cell transplantation: MRC Myeloma IX randomized trial results. Haematologica. 2012 Mar; 97(3):442–50. DOI: 10.3324/haematol.2011.043372