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Leo I. Gordon, MD, FACP


ESMO 2022: Role of ctDNA in Chinese Patients With Diffuse Large B-Cell Lymphoma

By: Cordi Craig, MS
Posted: Monday, September 19, 2022

Although diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL) is the most common type of non-Hodgkin lymphoma, current clinical characteristics are not sufficient for prognostic stratification. According to Tao Guan, MD, PhD, of the Shanxi Provincial Cancer Hospital, Taiyuan, China, and colleagues, circulating tumor DNA (ctDNA) may serve as a valuable prognostic factor and tumor-specific biomarker for DLBCL. Their study findings were presented during the European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) Congress 2022 (Abstract 624MO).

The study authors enrolled 172 newly diagnosed patients with DLBCL who underwent a targeted next-generation sequencing–based 59-gene panel. The investigators retrospectively evaluated the prognostic value of ctDNA with established risk factors including the International Prognostic Index, the Ann Arbor stage, lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) level, bulky disease, and bone marrow involvement.

Prior to therapy, ctDNA was detectable in 74.4% of patients. Overall, PCLO (33.6%) and PIM1 (32.8%) were the most frequently mutated genes. In addition, the mutation frequencies of KMT2D, CREBBP, CDL2, TP53, KLHL6, and MYC in the germinal center B-cell subtype of DLBCL were significantly higher than in patients diagnosed with non–germinal center B-cell subtypes (P = .012). By contrast, the CD79B mutation was significantly more frequent in non–germinal center B-cell subtypes (P = .023).

The study authors found a significant association between the mean of pretreatment ctDNA variant allele frequencies and both the International Prognostic Index and Ann Arbor stage. A significantly higher mean variant allele frequency was observed among patients with abnormal LDH levels (P < .0001), bone marrow involvement (P = .027), and bulky disease (P = .0047). Lower rates of overall and progression-free survival were observed in patients who had high levels of ctDNA mean variant allele frequency.

Disclosure: For full disclosures of the study authors, visit

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