Purpose: Advances in chemotherapy and supportive care have slowly improved survival rates for patients with high-risk neuroblastoma. The focus of many of these chemotherapeutic advances has been dose intensification. In this phase II trial involving children with advanced neuroblastoma, we used a program of induction chemotherapy followed by tandem high-dose, myeloablative treatments (high-dose therapy) with stem-cell rescue (HDT/SCR) in rapid sequence. Patients and Methods: Patients underwent induction chemotherapy during which peripheral-blood stem and progenitor cells were collected and local control measures undertaken. Patients then received tandem courses of HDT/SCR, 4 to 6 weeks apart. Thirty-nine patients (age 1 to 12 years) were assessable, and 70 cycles of HDT/SCR were completed. Results: Pheresis was possible in the case of all patients, despite their young ages, with an average of 7.2 x 106 CD34+ cells/kg available to support each cycle. Engraftment was rapid; median time to neutrophil engraftment was 11 days. Four patients who completed the first HDT course did not complete the second, and there were three deaths due to toxicity. With a median follow-up of 22 months (from diagnosis), 26 of 39 patients remained event-free. The 3-year event-free survival rate for these patients was 58%. Conclusion: A tandem HDT/SCR regimen for high-risk neuroblastoma is a feasible treatment strategy for children and may improve disease-free survival. (C) 2000 by American Society of Clinical Oncology.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cancer Research