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Jennifer R. Brown, MD, PhD


How Do Quality-of-Life Indicators Differ Between BTK Inhibitor Types in CLL?

By: Kayci Reyer
Posted: Tuesday, July 19, 2022

According to findings from the phase III ALPINE trial, presented at the European Hematology Association (EHA) 2022 Congress (Abstract P663), quality-of-life outcomes may be superior for patients with relapsed or refractory chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) who receive monotherapy with the next-generation Bruton’s tyrosine kinase (BTK) inhibitor zanubrutinib. Peter Hillmen, PhD, of St. James’s University Hospital, Leeds, United Kingdom, and colleagues assessed the health-related quality-of-life outcomes for patients receiving zanubrutinib versus those receiving the first generation BTK inhibitor ibrutinib.

The study included 652 patients with relapsed or refractory CLL or small lymphocytic leukemia who received either zanubrutinib (n = 327) or ibrutinib (n = 325) monotherapy. Health-related quality of life was assessed at baseline, during the first cycle, and during every subsequent third cycle until treatment ended using quality-of-life questionnaires from the European Organisation for Research and Treatment of Cancer. Key factors evaluated included global health status; physical and role functions; and negative symptoms such as diarrhea, fatigue, nausea/vomiting, and pain.

At cycles 7 and 13—occurring at 6 and 12 months of treatment, respectively—questionnaire- adjusted completion rates were above 85% in both treatment groups. At cycle 7, global health status and physical functioning scores were higher in the zanubrutinib group, whereas fatigue scores were lower. At cycle 13, diarrhea scores were lower in the zanubrutinib group. Overall, improvement was demonstrated more consistently from baseline to cycles 7 and 13 among patients receiving zanubrutinib.

Disclosure: For full disclosures of the study authors, visit

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