Characteristics, outcomes, prognostic factors and treatment of patients with T-cell prolymphocytic leukemia (T-PLL)

P. Jain, E. Aoki, M. Keating, W. G. Wierda, S. O'Brien, G. N. Gonzalez, A. Ferrajoli, N. Jain, P. A. Thompson, E. Jabbour, R. Kanagal-Shamanna, S. Pierce, A. Alousi, C. Hosing, I. Khouri, Z. Estrov, J. Cortes, H. Kantarjian, F. Ravandi, T. M. Kadia

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43 Scopus citations


Background: T-cell prolymphocytic leukemia (T-PLL) is a rare and aggressive disease. In this study, we report our experience from 119 patients with T-PLL. Patients and methods: We reviewed the clinico-pathologic records of 119 consecutive patients with T-PLL, who presented to our institution between 1990 and 2016. Results: One hundred and nineteen patients with T-PLL were analysed. Complex karyotype and aberrations in chromosome 14 were seen in 65% and 52% patients, respectively. Seventy-five patients (63%) were previously untreated and 43 (37%) were initially treated outside our institution. Sixty-three previously untreated patients (84%) received frontline therapies. Overall, 95 patients (80%) have died. Median overall survival (OS) from diagnosis was 19 months [95% confidence interval (CI) 16–26 months]. Using recursive partitioning (RP), we found that patients with hemoglobin < 9.3 g/dl, lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) ≥ 1668 IU/l, white blood cell ≥ 208 K/l and β2M ≥ 8 mg/l had significantly inferior OS and patients with hemoglobin < 9.3 g/dl had inferior progression-free survival (PFS). In multivariate analysis, we identified that presence of pleural effusion [hazard ratio (HR) 2.08 (95% CI 1.11–3.9); P = 0.02], high LDH (≥ 1668 IU/l) [HR 2.5 (95% CI 1.20–4.24); P < 0.001)], and low hemoglobin (< 9.3 g/dl) [HR 0.33 (95% CI 0.14–0.75); P = 0.008] were associated with shorter OS. Fifty-five previously untreated patients received treatment with an alemtuzumab-based regimen (42 monotherapy and 13 combination with pentostatin). Overall response rate, complete remission rate (CR) for single-agent alemtuzumab and alemtuzumab combined with pentostatin were 83%, 66% and 82%, 73% respectively. In patients who achieved initial CR, stem cell transplantation was not associated with longer PFS and OS. Conclusion: Outcomes in T-PLL remain poor. Multicenter collaborative effort is required to conduct prospective studies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1554-1559
Number of pages6
JournalAnnals of Oncology
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • T-PLL
  • prolymphocytes
  • prolymphocytic leukemia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology
  • Oncology


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