Press conference from ASH 2011: Results from a study evaluating two different strategies for management of asymptomatic low-tumor-burden (LTB) follicular lymphoma (FL) patients found that, following an induction course of rituximab, repeated treatment with the therapy at time of progression is just as effective in managing the disease as ongoing maintenance therapy.
Historically, patients with LTB (defined as small tumor size, limited lymph node involvement, limited or no symptoms, and other factors) disease have been observed rather than treated, with treatment deferred until the patient was symptomatic or the disease progressed, risking the individual’s well-being. This has been called the “watch and wait” strategy, which allows physicians to delay chemotherapy treatment for their patients for three years or more. Researchers have hypothesized that rituximab could delay the need for chemotherapy and that maintenance rituximab (MR) would provide disease control superior to rituximab retreatment (RR) when the disease progressed. In order to evaluate the two different rituximab dosing strategies for LTB follicular lymphoma, researchers embarked on the Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group Protocol E4402 (RESORT), a randomized, Phase III clinical trial.