CPX-351 is a liposomal formulation of cytarabine: daunorubicin designed to deliver synergistic drug ratios to leukemia cells. In this phase 2 study, newly diagnosed older acute myeloid leukemia (AML) patients were randomized 2: 1 to first-line CPX-351 or 713 treatment. The goal was to determine efficacy and identify patient subgroups that may benefit from CPX-351 treatment. Response rate (complete remission 1 incomplete remission) was the primary end point, with event-free survival (EFS) and overall survival (OS) as secondary end points. The 126 patients entered were balanced for disease and patient-specific risk factors. Overall, CPX-351 produced higher response rates (66.7% vs 51.2%, P = .07), meeting predefined criteria for success (P < .1). Differences in EFS and OS were not statistically significant. A planned analysis of the secondary AML subgroup demonstrated an improved response rate (57.6% vs 31.6%, P = .06), and prolongation of EFS (hazard ratio [HR] = 0.59, P = .08) and OS (HR = 0.46, P = .01). Recovery from cytopenias was slower after CPX-351 (median days to absolute neutrophil count >= 1000: 36 vs 32; platelets >100 000:37 vs 28) with more grade 3-4 infections but without increase in infection-related deaths (3.5% vs 7.3%) or 60-day mortality (4.7% vs 14.6%), indicating acceptable safety. These results suggest a clinical benefit with CPX-351, particularly among patients with secondary AML, and provide the rationale for a phase 3 trial currently underway in newly diagnosed secondary AML patients. This study is registered at Clinicaltrials.gov as #NCT00788892.
School of Medicine