Reduced-intensity chemotherapy in patients with advanced-stage Hodgkin lymphoma :updated results of the open-label, international, randomised phase 3 HD15 trial by the German Hodgkin Study Group

Andreas Engert, Helen Goergen, Jana Markova, Thomas Pabst, Julia Meissner, Josée M. Zijlstra, Zdenek Král, Dennis A. Eichenauer, Martin Soekler, Richard Greil, Stefanie Kreissl, Ruth Scheuvens, Hans Eich, Carsten Kobe, Markus Dietlein, Harald Stein, Michael Fuchs, Volker Diehl, Peter Borchmann

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The international, randomized phase 3 HD15 trial established 6xeBEACOPP as standard therapy for patients with newly diagnosed advanced-stage Hodgkin lymphoma (HL) within the German Hodgkin Study Group (GHSG). We performed a follow-up analysis to assess long-term efficacy and safety of this approach. Between 2003 and 2008, 2182 patients aged 18 to 60 years were recruited and randomized in a 1:1:1 ratio between 8 or 6 cycles of eBEACOPP or 8 cycles of the dose-dense BEACOPP-14 regimen, each followed by 30 Gy radiotherapy in case of positron emission tomography (PET)-positive residual lesions ≥2.5 cm. The study aimed at demonstrating non-inferiority regarding efficacy of the 2 experimental arms on a significance level of 2.5% each. The intention-to-treat analysis comprised 2126 patients with a median follow-up of 102 months. Ten-year progression-free survival was 81% (97.5% CI 77-85) with 8xeBEACOPP, 84% (80-87) with 6xeBEACOPP, and 84% (80-87) with 8xBEACOPP-14; the non-inferiority margin of 1.51 for the hazard ratio (HR) could be excluded for both comparisons (6xeBEACOPP, HR = 0.7, 97.5% CI 0.5-1.0; 8xBEACOPP-14, HR = 0.9, 97.5% CI 0.7-1.2). Overall survival at 10 years was 88% (85-91), 90% (88-93), and 92% (89-94), respectively. A total of 142 second malignancies corresponding to 10-year cumulative incidences of 10%, 7%, and 7% and standardized incidence ratios of 4.3, 2.5, and 2.8 were reported for 8xeBEACOPP, 6xeBEACOPP, and 8xBEACOPP-14, respectively. This updated analysis of the HD15 trial thus confirms the efficacy and reports on the long-term safety of a shortened first-line chemotherapy consisting of 6xeBEACOPP followed by PET-guided radiotherapy in advanced-stage HL.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere5
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2017


  • Advanced stages
  • Hodgkin lymphoma
  • Long-term outcome

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