Escalated daunorubicin dosing as an induction treatment for Philadelphia-negative adult acute lymphoblastic leukemia

Sang Min Lee, Won Sik Lee, Ho Jin Shin, Je Jung Lee, Sang Kyun Sohn, Joon Ho Moon, Hyeon Seok Eom, Jong Ho Won, Kyoo Hyung Lee, Je Hwan Lee, Dae Young Kim, Sung Soo Yoon, Inho Kim, Chul Won Jung, Seok Jin Kim, Hawk Kim, Jae Hoon Lee, Hun Mo Ryoo, Gyeong Won Lee, Sung Hyun KimYeung Chul Mun, Min Kyoung Kim, Young Don Joo

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5 Scopus citations


The dose intensity of daunorubicin (DNR) delivered during the induction period represented the major prognostic factor for the outcome of adult acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL). The aim of this study was to determine the survival or toxicity of escalated doses of DNR in induction treatment of adult patients with acute lymphoblastic leukemia who are at least 15 years of age. For induction chemotherapy, all patients were given 90 mg/m2/day of DNR by continuous intravenous (IV) infusion over 24 h daily on days 1-3, 2 mg of vincristine IV push on days 1 and 8, and 60 mg/m2/day of prednisolone per oral (PO) on days 1-14 in conjunction with 4,000 units/m2/day of l-asparaginase intramuscular or subcutaneous on days 17-28. The median patient age was 32 years (range, 15-69). Complete remission (CR) was achieved in 169 (88.5 %) patients, while 4 died before CR was reached. Additionally, 11 patients died from leukemia progression, 4 had refractory disease, and 3 had follow-up loss. The median follow-up time was 697 days (range, 12-2,270). The 3-year cumulative incidence of relapse was 49.3 %. The probabilities of disease-free survival and overall survival at 3 years were 46.1 and 43.1 %, respectively. The dose of DNR was 100 % of the target dose, and there were no additional specific toxicities. The results show that escalated doses of DNR in induction chemotherapy are similar with the standard dose in response and toxicities. Our study indicates that a more effective regimen or better chemotherapy agents are needed to improve the CR rate and prolong survival in Philadelphia-negative adult ALL.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1101-1110
Number of pages10
JournalAnnals of Hematology
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 2013

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Acknowledgments We thank all members of Korean adult ALL working party. The statistic analysis in this study was supported by Clinical Trial Center in Busan Paik Hospital. This work was supported by the 2012 Inje University research grant.


  • Acute lymphoblastic leukemia
  • Daunorubicin
  • Induction
  • Philadelphia-negative


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