Anagrelide for platelet-directed cytoreduction in polycythemia vera: Insights into utility and safety outcomes from a large multi-center database

Noa Rippel, Douglas Tremblay, Nicole Zubizarreta, Nikolai Podoltsev, Jason Gotlib, Mark Heaney, Andrew Kuykendall, Casey O'Connell, Jamile M. Shammo, Angela Fleischman, Marina Kremyanskaya, Ronald Hoffman, Ruben Mesa, Abdulraheem Yacoub, John Mascarenhas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Anagrelide (ANA) is a platelet-specific cytoreductive agent utilized in the guideline-directed management of high-risk essential thrombocythemia. In the context of polycythemia vera (PV), ANA is occasionally employed in clinical practice, although data has not consistently demonstrated a benefit to targeting a platelet goal as a therapeutic endpoint. The aim of the current study was to delineate the patterns of ANA use in PV, and to describe outcomes and toxicities. Within a multi-center cohort of 527 patients with PV, 48 received ANA (9 excluded for absent data). 27 (69.2%) had high-risk PV, 10 (25.6%) had prior thrombosis, and none had extreme thrombocytosis, acquired von Willebrand disease, and/or documented resistance to hydroxyurea. While ANA effectively lowered median platelet count, 43.5% of patients had an unresolved thrombocytosis at time of ANA discontinuation. Treatment-emergent adverse events—including headaches, cardiac palpitations and arrhythmias, nausea, vomiting and/or diarrhea—led to ANA discontinuation in 76.9% of patients. Further, three patients experienced arterial thromboses during a median duration of 27.5 months of ANA therapy. In conclusion, this study highlights ANA's restrictive tolerability profile which, compounded by the absence of clear advantage to strict platelet control in PV, suggests the use of ANA should be limited in this setting.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number106903
JournalLeukemia Research
Volume119
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 2022

Keywords

  • Anagrelide
  • Polycythemia vera
  • Thrombocytosis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology
  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research

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