Peripheral blood lymphocyte/monocyte ratio predicts outcome in follicular lymphoma and in diffuse large B-cell lymphoma patients in the rituximab era

Angelo Belotti, Elisa Doni, Silvia Bolis, Fausto Rossini, Ivana Casaroli, Sara Pezzatti, Enrico Maria Pogliani, Pietro Enrico Pioltelli
Clinical Lymphoma, Myeloma & Leukemia 2015, 15 (4): 208-13

BACKGROUND: Diffuse large B-cell lymphoma is an aggressive lymphoma and a large number of studies have therefore focused on the search for prognostic factors. The same interest concerns FL, for which identification of patients candidates for watch and wait (W&W) strategy is still an option. Studies about the number and type of lymphocytes and monocytes detectable in patients with Hodgkin and non-Hodgkin lymphomas indicate they might affect the pathogenesis and prognosis of these diseases. LMR is recently under investigation as a new prognostic parameter in DLBCL; the role of this ratio in FL in the rituximab era is unknown.

PATIENTS AND METHODS: We retrospectively analyzed 137 DLBCL and 132 FL patients referred to our institution; among FL pts, a W&W approach was performed at diagnosis for 42 patients. The remaining patients were treated with rituximab-containing therapy. We analyzed different LMR cutoff values at diagnosis and we wanted to investigate the prognostic effect among DLBCL and FL.

RESULTS: We found that the most discriminative LMR was 2.4 for DLBCL and 2 for FL. Among DLBCL patients, an LMR value < 2.4 was associated with a worse 2-year progression-free survival (PFS), and we observed no difference in overall survival and complete response rate. Considering FL patients, LMR > 2 was associated with a longer time to treatment start compared with the LMR < 2 group (P = .0096). Among the 92 patients treated with rituximab chemotherapy, 2-year PFS was superior in the LMR > 2 group.

CONCLUSION: LMR at diagnosis is a simple tool to better define long-term outcome of DLBCL and FL patients. The use of this tool might better define selection in FL of ideal candidates for W&W strategy.


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