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2170 Efficacy of Venetoclax Plus Hypomethylating Agent in Blast Phase Myeloproliferative Neoplasm

Program: Oral and Poster Abstracts
Session: 634. Myeloproliferative Syndromes: Clinical: Poster II
Hematology Disease Topics & Pathways:
Diseases, Therapies, Combinations, MPN, Myeloid Malignancies, Clinically relevant
Sunday, December 6, 2020, 7:00 AM-3:30 PM

Erika Morsia, MD1*, Naseema Gangat, MBBS1, James M. Foran, MD2, Jeanne M. Palmer, Md3, Michelle A Elliott, MD1 and Ayalew Tefferi, MD1

1Division of Hematology, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN
2Division of Hematology and Medical Oncology, Mayo Clinic, Jacksonville, FL
3Division of Hematology/Oncology, Mayo Clinic, Phoenix, AZ

Introduction: Myeloproliferative neoplasms (MPN), including primary myelofibrosis (PMF), essential thrombocythemia (ET) and polycythemia vera (PV), have a propensity to evolve into blast phase myeloproliferative neoplasm (BP-MPN) with a 20-year incidence rate of 9.3 %, 3.9% and 2.6%, respectively. (Szuber et al., 2019)Treatment options for BP-MPN are limited and the prognosis of these patients is dismal with a median survival of only 3.6 months and 5-year survival rate of <5%.(Tefferi et al., 2018) Considering the recent reported data on the efficacy of venetoclax when combined with hypomethylating agents (HMA) in acute myeloid leukemia (AML) in both relapsed/refractory and newly diagnosed unfit patients, we have extended such combination therapy for patients with BP-MPN.
Methods: We retrospectively analyzed 14 consecutive BP-MPN patients who received venetoclax plus HMA therapy between August 2018 and June 2020. We collected data regarding clinical characteristics of chronic phase MPN and BP-MPN, cytogenetic and leukemia mutation profile, efficacy and outcome. Oral venetoclax was administered in combination with azacitidine 75 mg/m2 days 1-7 (5 patients) or decitabine 20 mg/m2 days 1-5 (9 patients). Venetoclax dose was adjusted based on drug interactions particularly with azole antifungal prophylaxis. Diagnostic, risk and response assignments were according to the 2017 European LeukemiaNet (ELN) criteria.(Döhner et al., 2017) Minimal residual disease (MRD) assessment by flow cytometry, karyotype or next-generation sequencing (NGS) was performed in a subset of patients.
Results: Patient characteristics at time of leukemic transformation, treatment details, response rates and overall outcome are shown in Table 1. Median age of patients was 67 years (range 48-81) with poor-risk cytogenetics in 69% of patients. JAK2 was mutated in 10 patients (71%) and CALR in 2 (14%); other mutations included TP53 in 5 patients (36%), TET2 in 4 (29%), KRAS in 3 (21%), IDH1/2 in 3 (21%), ASXL1 in 2 (14%) and U2AF1 in 2 (14%). Eight patients (57%) received venetoclax and HMA combination therapy upfront for their BP-MPN, 2 patients (14%) had failed HMA therapy previously and one patient had prior allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplant (AHSCT).
Two patients (14%) presented with myeloid sarcoma; one of these two patients documented partial resolution of the extramedullary tumor by imaging studies, after treatment with venetoclax plus HMA. Among the remaining 12 patients, overall response rate (ORR) was 42% (n=5) and included complete remission (CR) in 3 patients (25%) and partial remission (PR) in another 2 (17%). The best response to therapy was seen after a median of 1 month (range, 1-2). Among 3 CR responders, 2 (66.6%) had minimal residual disease negative by NGS and not evidence of preceding MPN, then they successfully transitioned to AHSCT, while the third CR patient at the time of best response showed persistence of the TP53 mutation. Additionally, one PR patient subsequently relapsed and received salvage chemotherapy followed by AHSCT. (Table 2)
Although data is limited by the small cohort and short follow up when the outcome of patients treated with venetoclax in combination with HMA were compared to Mayo Clinic’s historical control of patients with BP-MPN treated with HMA alone (n=26) or intensive chemotherapy (n=69), there was higher CR rate in patients treated with venetoclax and HMA (25%) compared to those receiving HMA alone (4%; p=0.048) but not to those receiving intensive chemotherapy (35%; p<0.0001). Moreover, the intensive chemotherapy cohort showed 24% of CR with incomplete hematologic recovery (CRi) not seen in patients receiving HMA alone or HMA with venetoclax (Figure1).
Conclusions: The relatively high rate of complete response observed in our patients with BP-MPN were similar to those reported in a pivotal study of elderly unfit AML patients treated upfront with venetoclax + HMA with overall response rates of 68%.(DiNardo et al., 2019) Furthermore, responders included patients with adverse molecular risk factors who usually respond poorly to conventional chemotherapy (i.e. TP53 mutated patients). Our observations provide preliminary evidence for the potential efficacy of venetoclax and HMA combination therapy in BP-MPN with the goal of achieving CR/CRi followed by consolidative AHSCT wherever possible to provide durable remission and meaningful survival benefit.

Disclosures: Foran: Agios: Honoraria, Research Funding; Trillium: Research Funding; Takeda: Research Funding; Kura Oncology: Research Funding; Aptose: Research Funding; Aprea: Research Funding; Actinium: Research Funding; Boehringer Ingelheim: Research Funding; Abbvie: Research Funding; BMS: Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees; Pfizer: Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees; Servier: Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees; Novartis: Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees; Revolution Medicine: Consultancy; Xencor: Research Funding; H3Biosciences: Research Funding.

*signifies non-member of ASH