As most patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) with morphologic complete remission (CR) ultimately relapse, better predictors for outcome are needed. Recently, Cheson et al suggested using cytogenetic remission (CRc) as part of the criteria for CR. To our knowledge, ours is the first relatively large study evaluating the usefulness of CRc attained immediately following induction chemotherapy.Patients and Methods
We included AML patients treated on Cancer and Leukemia Group B front-line studies with cytogenetic samples obtained at diagnosis and at the first day of documented CR following induction. Patients with abnormal cytogenetics at diagnosis, and normal cytogenetics at CR (NCR; n = 103) were compared with those with abnormal cytogenetics both at diagnosis and at CR (ACR; n = 15) for overall survival (OS), disease-free survival (DFS), and cumulative incidence of relapse (CIR). Cox proportional hazards models determined the prognostic significance of cytogenetics at CR, adjusting for other covariates.Results
Clinical features were similar for both groups, with the exception of favorable cytogenetics [t(8;21), inv(16)/t(16;16), t(15;17)] at diagnosis, which was more frequent (P = .03) in the NCR group. Median follow-up was 3.1 years (range, 1.0 to 11.4 years). ACR patients had significantly shorter OS (P = .006) and DFS (P = .0001), and higher CIR (P = .0001). In multivariable models, the NCR and ACR groups were predictors for OS (P = .03), DFS (P = .02), and CIR (P = .05). The relative risk of relapse or death was 2.1 times higher for ACR patients than for NCR patients (95% CI, 1.1 to 3.9).Conclusion
Our data suggest that converting to normal karyotype at the time of first CR is an important prognostic indicator and support the use of CRc as a criterion of CR in AML.