Patients with CML in lymphoid blast crisis (LBC-CML) or advanced Ph+ ALL have an unsatisfactory and only brief response to imatinib mesylate (IM). Moreover, treatment options in pts who failed IM are extremely limited. Dasatinib (BMS-354825) is a novel, oral kinase inhibitor that targets BCR-ABL and SRC kinases, and has shown promising clinical activity in a Phase I dose escalating study in patients with BCR-ABL-positive leukemias. Between January 2005 and June 2005, 77 pts (42 CML-LBC and 35 Ph+ ALL) who had failed IM-based therapy were enrolled in this multinational Phase II study investigating the safety and efficacy of dasatinib. This preliminary analysis summarizes data on the first 28 pts accrued (13 CML-LBC and 15 Ph+ ALL) who were accrued prior to March 20, 2005. Dasatinib was administered orally at 70 mg twice daily (BID) on a continuous daily dosing schedule; dose escalation to 100 mg BID or dose reduction to 50 mg and 40 mg BID were allowed for poor initial response or persistent toxicity, respectively. Complete blood counts were performed weekly and bone marrow evaluation, including cytogenetic analysis, was scheduled every month. Mutation analyses were performed in all pts. 27 pts were IM resistant and 1 was IM intolerant; 17 (61%) pts had received prior IM doses >600 mg/day, 13 (46%) pts received IM for <1 year and 12 pts (43%) previously underwent stem cell transplantation. Response on prior IM regimen included complete hematologic response (CHR) in 19 (68%) pts and major cytogenetic response (MCyR) in 11 (39%) pts. Median time from leukemia diagnosis was 16.6 months (range 4.9–101.6). Median age was 44 years (range 20–84) and 61% of pts were male. At baseline, median platelet count was 37 x 103/mm3 (range 7–360) with median peripheral blood blasts of 35% (range 0–90) and median blasts in bone marrow of 81% (1–100). Dasatinib doses were escalated in 8 (29%) pts and 3 (11%) pts required dose reduction. 13 pts had a major hematologic response (7 CHR and 6 no evidence of leukemia, [CHR without complete recovery of PMN or platelets]) and 12 pts had a cytogenetic response within 1–3 months (11 complete and 1 minor). 9/13 pts (69% of responding pts) maintained their response after a median follow-up of 14+ weeks (range 10+ - 24+). Complete clearing of extramedullary sites was documented. Analysis of molecular response is ongoing. The majority of pts had grade 3 or 4 myelosuppression, which was pre-existing in most cases (63% with grade 3–4 neutropenia and 58% with grade 3–4 thrombocytopenia had the same grade at study entry); PMN <500/mm3 in 64% of pts and platelets <25 x 103/mm3 in 71% of pts. Non-hematologic toxicities included grade 1 and 2 peripheral edema (3 pts) and grade 1 facial edema (2 pts). GI intolerance was infrequent. In conclusion, dasatinib has significant and clinically meaningful efficacy in this heavily pretreated population of LBC-CML and Ph+ ALL pts with acquired resistance to imatinib. Updated data on all 77 patients with a minimum of 6 months’ follow-up will be presented.

Author notes

Corresponding author