Significant uncertainty exists in regard to the efficacy of maintenance therapy after high-dose chemotherapy (HDC) as well as autologous stem cell transplantation (ASCT) for the treatment of patients with aggressive lymphoma. A systematic review was performed to evaluate the effectiveness of post-ASCT maintenance therapy in patients with relapsed/refractory lymphoma. A comprehensive literature search yielded 4476 studies and a total of 42 studies (11 randomized controlled trials [RCT], 9 retrospective comparative studies, and 22 single-arm studies) were included in the systematic review. There was significant heterogeneity in study design, chemotherapeutic regimens, post-ASCT maintenance strategies, patient enrollment criteria, and study endpoints. Our findings suggest that post-ASCT maintenance immune-targeting strategies, including PD-1/PD-L1 blocking antibodies, rituximab, and brentuximab, may improve progression-free survival but not overall survival. Collectively, the results indicate a need for testing new strategies with well-designed and adequately powered RCTs to better address the role of post-ASCT maintenance in relapsed/refractory lymphomas.
- Autologous hematopoietic stem cell transplantation
- Hodgkin disease
- Maintenance therapy
- Non-Hodgkin lymphoma
ASJC Scopus subject areas