Continuous lenalidomide treatment for newly diagnosed multiple myeloma

Antonio Palumbo*, Roman Hajek, Michel Delforge, Martin Kropff, Maria Teresa Petrucci, John Catalano, Heinz Gisslinger, Wiesław Wiktor-Jȩdrzejczak, Mamia Zodelava, Katja Weisel, Nicola Cascavilla, Genadi Iosava, Michele Cavo, Janusz Kloczko, Joan Bladé, Meral Beksac, Ivan Spicka, Torben Plesner, Joergen Radke, Christian LangerDina Ben Yehuda, Alessandro Corso, Lindsay Herbein, Zhinuan Yu, Jay Mei, Christian Jacques, Meletios A. Dimopoulos

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

664 Scopus citations


BACKGROUND: Lenalidomide has tumoricidal and immunomodulatory activity against multiple myeloma. This double-blind, multicenter, randomized study compared melphalan-prednisone- lenalidomide induction followed by lenalidomide maintenance (MPR-R) with melphalan-prednisone-lenalidomide (MPR) or melphalan-prednisone (MP) followed by placebo in patients 65 years of age or older with newly diagnosed multiple myeloma. METHODS: We randomly assigned patients who were ineligible for transplantation to receive MPR-R (nine 4-week cycles of MPR followed by lenalidomide maintenance therapy until a relapse or disease progression occurred [152 patients]) or to receive MPR (153 patients) or MP (154 patients) without maintenance therapy. The primary end point was progression-free survival. RESULTS: The median follow-up period was 30 months. The median progression-free survival was significantly longer with MPR-R (31 months) than with MPR (14 months; hazard ratio, 0.49; P<0.001) or MP (13 months; hazard ratio, 0.40; P<0.001). Response rates were superior with MPR-R and MPR (77% and 68%, respectively, vs. 50% with MP; P<0.001 and P = 0.002, respectively, for the comparison with MP). The progression-free survival benefit associated with MPR-R was noted in patients 65 to 75 years of age but not in those older than 75 years of age (P = 0.001 for treatment-by-age interaction). After induction therapy, a landmark analysis showed a 66% reduction in the rate of progression with MPR-R (hazard ratio for the comparison with MPR, 0.34; P<0.001) that was age-independent. During induction therapy, the most frequent adverse events were hematologic; grade 4 neutropenia was reported in 35%, 32%, and 8% of the patients in the MPR-R, MPR, and MP groups, respectively. The 3-year rate of second primary tumors was 7% with MPR-R, 7% with MPR, and 3% with MP. CONCLUSIONS: MPR-R significantly prolonged progression-free survival in patients with newly diagnosed multiple myeloma who were ineligible for transplantation, with the greatest benefit observed in patients 65 to 75 years of age. (Funded by Celgene; MM-015 number, NCT00405756.)

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)1759-1769
Number of pages11
JournalNew England Journal of Medicine
Issue number19
StatePublished - 10 May 2012
Externally publishedYes


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