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Purpose: Randomized, multicenter, open-label, phase 2/3 trial investigating lenalidomide versus investigator's choice (IC) in relapsed/refractory diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL).Experimental Design: Patients with DLBCL who received ≥2 prior therapies were stratified by DLBCL subtype [germinal center B-cell (GCB) vs. non-GCB; determined by immunohistochemistry (IHC)] and then randomized 1:1 to lenalidomide (25 mg/day, 21 days of 28-day cycle) or IC (gemcitabine, rituximab, etoposide, or oxaliplatin). Crossover to lenalidomide was permitted for IC-treated patients with radiologically confirmed progressive disease. The primary endpoint was overall response rate (ORR). Progression-free survival (PFS), overall survival, and subtype analysis [GCB vs. activated B-cell (ABC)] using gene expression profiling (GEP) were exploratory endpoints.Results: Stage 1: 102 DLBCL patients (by IHC: non-GCB, n = 54; GCB, n = 48) received ≥1 dose of lenalidomide or IC. Hematologic treatment-emergent adverse events with lenalidomide versus IC included neutropenia (42.6%; 36.4%), anemia (33.3%; 47.3%), thrombocytopenia (24.1%; 43.6%), and leukopenia (5.6%; 12.7%), respectively. Overall, lenalidomide-treated patients had an ORR of 27.5% versus 11.8% in IC (ORRs were similar regardless of IHC-defined DLBCL subtype). Median PFS was increased in patients receiving lenalidomide (13.6 weeks) versus IC (7.9 weeks; P = 0.041), with greater improvements in non-GCB patients (15.1 vs. 7.1 weeks, respectively; P = 0.021) compared with GCB (10.1 vs. 9.0 weeks, respectively; P = 0.550).Conclusions: The clinical benefit of lenalidomide monotherapy in DLBCL patients was more evident in the non-GCB subtype. Exploratory analyses suggest that this preferential benefit was more pronounced in the GEP-defined ABC population, demonstrating a need for additional studies of lenalidomide in DLBCL using GEP subtyping. Clin Cancer Res; 23(15); 4127-37. ©2017 AACR.

Original publication




Journal article


Clin cancer res

Publication Date





4127 - 4137


Adult, Aged, Antineoplastic Combined Chemotherapy Protocols, Deoxycytidine, Disease-Free Survival, Etoposide, Female, Humans, Kaplan-Meier Estimate, Lenalidomide, Lymphoma, Large B-Cell, Diffuse, Male, Middle Aged, Organoplatinum Compounds, Oxaliplatin, Prognosis, Proportional Hazards Models, Rituximab, Thalidomide, Treatment Outcome, Gemcitabine