Clinical features predict responsiveness to imatinib in platelet-derived growth factor receptor-alpha-negative hypereosinophilic syndrome

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With the exception of the presence of the FIP1L1-PDGFRA fusion gene, little is known about predictors of imatinib response in clinically-defined hypereosinophilic syndrome (HES).


Subjects with FIP1L1-PDGFRA-myeloid neoplasm (FP; n =12), PDGFRA-negative HES with ≥4 criteria suggestive of a myeloid neoplasm (MHES; n =10), or steroid-refractory PDGFRA-negative HES with <4 myeloid criteria (SR; n = 5) were enrolled in a prospective study of imatinib therapy (NCT00044304: registered at The primary outcome was an eosinophil count <1.5 × 109/L at one month and improvement of clinical symptoms. Clinical, molecular, and bone marrow responses to imatinib were assessed. A retrospective cohort of 18 subjects with clinically-defined HES who received imatinib (300–400 mg daily ≥ 1 month) were classified according to the criteria used in the prospective study.


Overall, imatinib response rates were 100% in the FP group (n = 16), 54% in the MHES group (n = 13) and 0% in the SR group (n = 16). The presence of ≥ 4 myeloid features was the sole predictor of response. After ≥ 18 months in complete remission, imatinib was tapered and discontinued in 8 FP and 1 MHES subjects. Seven subjects (6 FP, 1 MHES) remain in remission off therapy for a median of 29 months (range 14–36).


Clinical features of MHES predict imatinib response in PDGFRA-negative HES.

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