Updates from the 2017 American Society of Hematology annual meeting: practice-changing studies in untreated chronic lymphocytic leukemia

C. Owen, C. Toze, A. Christofides


The 2017 annual meeting of the American Society of Hematology took place 9–12 December in Atlanta, Georgia. At the meeting, the oral presentations included results from key studies on the first-line treatment of chronic lymphocytic leukemia. A series of phase ii studies focusing on the efficacy and safety of novel treatment strategies were especially notable. One concerned the health-related quality of life results from the gibb study, which had examined the combination of obinutuzumab and bendamustine. A second evaluated the venetoclax–ibrutinib regimen in patients with high-risk disease. The third assessed the combination of ibrutinib, fludarabine, cyclophosphamide, and obinutuzumab in patients with mutated immunoglobulin heavy-chain variable region genes. The fourth examined the combination of ibrutinib, fludarabine, cyclophosphamide, and rituximab in younger patients. And the final study evaluated obinutuzumab–ibrutinib followed by a minimal residual disease strategy in fit patients. Our meeting report describes the foregoing studies and presents interviews with investigators and commentaries by Canadian hematologists about the potential effects on Canadian practice.


Untreated disease; first-line treatments; treatment-naïve patients; chronic lymphocytic leukemia

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3747/co.25.4005

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ISSN: 1198-0052 (Print) ISSN: 1718-7729 (Online)