Intensive chemotherapy in patients with chronic myelogenous leukaemia (CML) in accelerated or blastic phase - a report from the Swedish CML Group

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


In attempting to restore the chronic phase (CP) of chronic myelogenous leukaemia (CML), the Swedish CML group utilized an intensive chemotherapy protocol for 83 patients (aged 16-79 years) in accelerated (AP, n = 22) or blastic phase (BC, n = 61). Most patients received a combination of mitoxantrone (12 mg/m(2) /d) and etoposide (100 mg/m(2) /d) together with cytosine arabinoside (1 g/m(2) b.i.d) for 4 d. Overall, 39 patients (47%) achieved a second CP (CP2)/partial remission (PR). Responding patients < 65 years were eligible for ablative chemotherapy followed by an allogeneic (SCT) or a double autologous stem cell transplant (ASCT). Seventeen of 34 responders < 65 years failed to proceed to transplantation as a result of early disease progression (n = 15) or disease-related complications (n = 2). The remaining 17 patients underwent SCT (n = 9; including four unrelated donor SCT) or ASCT (n = 8). Only one of the eight ASCT patients had a second ASCT; the remaining seven failed because of progression (n = 5) or hypoplasia (n = 2). The median duration of CP2/PR was 6 months (range 1-72 months). Five patients achieved a longer CP2/PR than CP1. The 1 year survival was 70% for SCT/ASCT patients (median survival 21 months), 50% for responding patients overall, but only 7% for non-responders (P < 0.001). Three SCT/ASCT patients are long-term survivors (65+, 66+ and 73+ months). In conclusion, approximately half of the patients achieved a CP2/PR after intensive chemotherapy, with a clear survival advantage for responders vs non-responders. Subsequent SCT/ASCT was feasible for half of the responders (< 65 years), and one individual underwent double ASCT. Novel therapeutic options for CML patients in AP/BP are needed.


  • Ingemar Turesson
  • U Axdorph
  • L Vilen
  • L Stenke
  • AM Uden
  • G Grimfors
  • M Bjorkholm
  • J Carneskog
  • J Hansen
  • O Linder
  • P Ljungman
  • E Lofvenberg
  • C Malm
  • B Simonsson
  • L Vilen
  • AM Uden
  • M Bjorkholm
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Hematology


  • accelerated/blastic phase, CML, stem cell transplantation
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1048-1054
JournalBritish Journal of Haematology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2002
Publication categoryResearch

Bibliographic note

The information about affiliations in this record was updated in December 2015. The record was previously connected to the following departments: Emergency medicine/Medicine/Surgery (013240200)