Background: Limited experience is available on the feasibility and efficacy of autologous stem-cell transplantation (ASCT) in patients with mantle cell lymphoma (MCL) beyond 65 years.
Design and methods: We analysed 712 patients with MCL treated with ASCT from 2000 to 2007 and reported to the European Group for Blood and Marrow Transplantation registry. Patients >65 years were compared with patients <65 years for the end points non-relapse mortality (NRM), relapse incidence, progression-free survival (PFS), and overall survival (OS).
Results: Seventy-nine patients were ≥65 years old. Median time from diagnosis to ASCT was longer in the elderly patients (11 versus 9 months, P = 0.005); they had more commonly received at least two treatment lines (62.0% versus 47.9%, P = 0.02) and were less commonly in first complete remission at ASCT (35.4% versus 51.2%, P = 0.002). Median follow-up after ASCT was 19 and 25 months, respectively. NRM was comparable at 3 months (3.8% versus 2.5%) and at 5 years (5.6% versus 5.0%). There were no differences in relapse rate (66% versus 55% at 5 years), PFS (29% versus 40%) and OS (61% versus 67%) between both populations of patients.
Conclusion: ASCT beyond 65 years of age is feasible in selected patients with MCL and results in similar disease control and survival as in younger patients.