Adult acute lymphoblastic leukemia/lymphoma (ALL/LBL) is a rare and heterogeneous malignancy characterized by uncontrolled proliferation of B or T cell precursor cells. Here, we retrospectively analyzed the outcome of early autologous stem cell transplantation in standard-risk patients in first complete remission (n=24) and of allogeneic transplantation in high and highest risk, and relapsed/refractory patients (n=35). The 10-year overall survival after autologous transplantation was 45%. The 10-year overall survival after allogeneic transplantation was 58%. The cumulative incidence of relapse was 29% after allogeneic and 67% after autologous transplantation. The cumulative incidence of non-relapse mortality was 0% after autologous and 12% after allogeneic transplantation. This retrospective single center analysis in a limited number of standard-risk patients clearly demonstrates that early autologous transplantation in first complete remission leads to an acceptable long-term outcome with a short overall treatment duration of less than 6 months compared with more than 2 years with conventional chemotherapy. More sensitive and standardized methods to detect minimal residual disease (MRD) will further help to identify those patients more accurately who are most likely to benefit from such a short and intensive treatment strategy (i.e., MRD negative standard-risk patients) or those who require early targeted therapy (e.g., blinatumomab) in case of MRD positivity. Early allogeneic transplantation results in long-term survival/cure in nearly two-thirds of all high and highest risk, and relapsed/refractory patients.
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