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03 2018 Blood advances

CDA as a predictive marker for life-threatening toxicities in patients with AML treated with cytarabine.


Fanciullino R, Farnault L, Donnette M, Imbs DC, Venton G, Berda-Haddad Y, Ivanov V, Ciccolini J, Ouafik L, Lacarelle B, Costello R


Cytarabine (Ara-C) is the backbone of acute myeloid leukemia (AML) chemotherapy. Little is known about possible risk factors predictive for the frequent (ie, up to 16%) life-threatening or lethal toxicities caused by Ara-C. Ara-C is detoxified in the liver by a single enzyme, cytidine deaminase (CDA), coded by a gene known to be highly polymorphic. In this proof-of-concept study, we particularly investigated the role of the CDA poor metabolizer (PM) phenotype in Ara-C toxicities. CDA phenotyping (measurement of CDA residual activity in serum) and genotyping (search for the allelic variant) were performed in 58 adult patients with AML treated with the standard 7+3 (Ara-C + anthracyclines) protocol. Statistically significantly lower CDA activity was observed in patients experiencing severe/lethal toxicities as compared with patients who did not (1.5 ± 0.7 U/mg vs 3.95 ± 3.1 U/mg; Student test < .001). Subsequent receiver operating characteristic analysis identified a threshold in CDA activity (ie, 2 U/mg) associated with PM syndrome and increased risk of developing severe toxicities. Five percent of patients experienced lethal toxicities, all displaying CDA PM status (1.3 ± 0.5 U/mg). In terms of efficacy, a trend toward higher response rates and longer progression-free survival and overall survival were observed in patients with low CDA activity. Taken together, the results of this study strongly suggest that CDA is a predictive marker of life-threatening toxicities in patients with AML receiving induction therapy with standard Ara-C.

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