A comprehensive review of lenalidomide therapy for B-cell non-Hodgkin lymphoma

Thomas E. Witzig, G. S. Nowakowski, T. M. Habermann, A. Goy, F. J. Hernandez-Ilizaliturri, A. Chiappella, U. Vitolo, N. Fowler, M. S. Czuczman

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59 Scopus citations


Lenalidomide is an oral non-chemotherapy immunomodulator with direct and indirect effects on non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) cells and with single-agent activity in relapsed/refractory aggressive and indolent B-cell NHL, including mantle cell lymphoma (MCL), diffuse large B-cell lymphoma, and follicular lymphoma. Based on the pivotal phase II MCL-001 trial of lenalidomide in heavily pretreated patients with relapsed/refractory MCL, lenalidomide was approved by the US Food and Drug Administration for the treatment of relapsed/refractory MCL after failure of two prior therapies, one of which includes bortezomib, at a recommended starting dose of 25 mg on days 1-21 of each 28-day cycle. Lenalidomide enhanced the survival benefit in combination with rituximab in preclinical models, prompting clinical evaluation of the lenalidomide- rituximab (R2) combination. In phase II trials, lenalidomide 20 mg on days 1-21 in combination with different standarddose rituximab schedules exhibited promising activity in both first-line and relapsed/refractory disease across multiple B-cell NHL subtypes. The feasibility of combining lenalidomide with immunochemotherapy, including R-CHOP and rituximab- bendamustine, has been demonstrated in phase I/II trials. These latter regimens are currently being evaluated in ongoing phase II and III trials. The role of lenalidomide monotherapy and R2 in maintenance therapy is also being examined. Based on available evidence, a comprehensive review of lenalidomide in all treatment phases of B-cell NHL- relapsed/refractory disease, first-line, and maintenance-is presented here.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1667-1677
Number of pages11
JournalAnnals of Oncology
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 2015


  • Diffuse large B-cell lymphoma
  • Follicular lymphoma
  • Lenalidomide
  • Mantle cell lymphoma
  • Non-Hodgkin lymphoma
  • Rituximab

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology
  • Oncology


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