Articles

Updated BHS guidelines for the treatment of diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL): Novelties anno 2024

BJH - volume 15, issue 4, june 2022

J. Brijs MD, M. André MD, PhD, S. Bailly MD, K. Beel MD, PhD, C. Bonnet MD, G. Crochet MD, P. De Paepe MD, PhD, D. Dierickx MD, PhD, C. Jacquy MD, PhD, K. Saevels MD, S. Snauwaert MD, PhD, E. Van den Neste MD, PhD, V. Vergote MD

SUMMARY

Diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL) is an aggressive B-cell lymphoma and represents the most common subtype of B-cell non-Hodgkin lymphomas. The majority of patients (60–70%) can nowadays be cured with first line chemo-immunotherapy (CIT), mostly a combination of rituximab, cyclophosphamide, doxorubicin, vincristine and prednisone (R-CHOP). The remaining 30–40% of patients with relapsing or refractory (R/R) disease have an unfavourable prognosis. Until recently, these patients could only be cured with platinum-based salvage CIT followed by high-dose chemotherapy and an autologous stem cell transplantation, but with rather disappointing outcomes. However, new and promising treatments for these patients have now found their way into clinical practice, with good response and survival rates and manageable toxicity rates. This article will briefly review the latest advances in the treatment of DLBCL in Belgium, both for newly diagnosed disease and for R/R disease. We will focus on the role of polatuzumab vedotin in first line, chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T-cell therapy in second line, tafasitamab-lenalidomide in second line or higher, and bispecific antibodies in third line or higher. New treatment algorithms, both for untreated and for R/R DLBCL, clinically oriented and adapted to the Belgian reimbursement criteria, are also presented.

(BELG J HEMATOL 2024;15(4):147–57)

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Highlights in aggressive lymphoma

BJH - volume 14, issue 1, february 2023

K. Beel MD, PhD

SUMMARY

Many patients with an aggressive lymphoma will be cured with frontline therapy. However, relapsed patients cannot always be cured and die as a result of their disease. Fortunately, many trials in frontline and relapsed setting address the medical need of patients with a high risk of inferior survival. Especially immunotherapies have shown promising results and some of these therapies have already become standard of care, or will be in the near future. This paper provides a summary of the most interesting clinical trials in aggressive lymphoma, presented at the 2022 ASH meeting.

(BELG J HEMATOL 2023;14(1):4–9)

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Highlights in acute myeloid leukaemia

BJH - volume 12, issue 1, february 2021

K. Beel MD, PhD

SUMMARY

AML is an extremely complex and heterogeneous disease. It is also a disease of the elderly, with a median age at diagnosis of 68 years and one third of the patients being older than 75 years. These factors make treatment of AML challenging and there is still a high unmet need to improve survival and QOL for the majority of AML patients.

(BELG J HEMATOL 2021;12(1):22-4)

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Update on therapy of relapsed and refractory multiple myeloma

BJH - volume 8, issue 2, march 2017

M.C. Vekemans MD, K. Beel MD, PhD, J. Caers MD, PhD, N. Meuleman MD, PhD, G. Bries MD, PhD, H. Demuynck MD, B. De Prijck MD, H. De Samblanx MD, A. Deweweire MD, K. Fostier MD, A. Kentos MD, PhD, P. Mineur MD, M. Vaes MD, I. Vande Broek MD, PhD, A. Vande Velde MD, J. Van Droogenbroeck MD, P. Vlummens MD, K.L. Wu MD, PhD, R. Schots MD, PhD, M. Delforge MD, PhD, C. Doyen MD, On behalf of the Multiple Myeloma Study Group of the Belgian Haematology Society (BHS)

SUMMARY

The prognosis for multiple myeloma patients has improved substantially over the past decade with the development of more effective chemotherapeutic agents and regimens that possess a high level of anti-tumour activity. However, nearly all multiple myeloma patients ultimately relapse, even those who experience a complete response to initial therapy. Management of relapsed disease remains a critical aspect of multiple myeloma care and an important area of ongoing research. This manuscript from the Belgian Haematology Society multiple myeloma subgroup provides some recommendations on the management of relapsed disease.

(BELG J HEMATOL 2017;8(2):53–65)

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Highlights in myelodysplastic syndromes and myeloproliferative neoplasms

BJH - volume 7, issue 4, september 2016

K. Beel MD, PhD

(BELG J HEMATOL 2016;7(4):166–9)

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Diagnosis and treatment of AL Amyloidosis in 2015: Consensus guidelines of the Belgian Hematological Society

BJH - volume 6, issue 5, december 2015

K. Beel MD, PhD, M.C. Vekemans MD, G. Bries MD, PhD, J. Caers MD, PhD, B. De Pryck MD, K. Fostier MD, A. Kentos MD, PhD, N. Meuleman MD, PhD, P. Mineur MD, I. Van de Broek MD, PhD, K.L. Wu MD, PhD, C. Doyen MD, M. Delforge MD, PhD

Summary

Immunoglobulin light chain amyloidosis is a clonal plasma cell dyscrasia, historically associated with a very poor prognosis. Prompt diagnosis is critical to preserve organ function and improve survival in immunoglobulin light chain amyloidosis patients. The severity of cardiac involvement and response to treatment are the most important prognostic factors. Serum free light chain ratio and cardiac biomarkers troponin T and N-terminal pro-brain natriuretic peptide are powerful tools for the evaluation of prognosis and treatment response. Historically, treatment with autologous stem cell transplantation appears to offer a survival benefit, but is only an option in a minority of patients. IMiDs, and especially proteasome inhibitors, have shown promising activity in immunoglobulin light chain amyloidosis. Supportive care should be integrated in the treatment plan and requires a multidisciplinary approach. These guidelines summarise a consensus of the myeloma subcommittee of the Belgian Hematological Society on diagnosis, cytoreductive and supportive treatment of immunoglobulin light chain amyloidosis, based on an extended review of the literature. Where applicable, comments were added with respect to the Belgian reimbursement modalities.

(BELG J HEMATOL 2015;6(5):187–94)

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Update on the initial therapy of multiple myeloma

BJH - volume 5, issue 4, december 2014

M.C. Vekemans MD, K. Beel MD, PhD, J. Caers MD, PhD, N. Meuleman MD, PhD, G. Bries MD, PhD, V. Delrieu MD, H. Demuynck MD, B. De Prijck MD, H. De Samblanx MD, A. Deweweire MD, A. Kentos MD, PhD, P. Mineur MD, F. Offner MD, PhD, I. Vande Broek MD, PhD, A. Vande Velde MD, J. Van Droogenbroeck MD, KL. Wu MD, PhD, C. Doyen MD, R. Schots MD, PhD, M. Delforge MD, PhD

Summary

With the introduction of immunomodulatory drugs and proteasome inhibitors, major improvements have been achieved in the treatment and prognosis of multiple myeloma. Different treatment combinations are now in use and innovative therapies are being developed. This rapidly changing therapeutic landscape calls for an update on the Belgian myeloma guidelines, published in 2010.1 Based on an extensive review of the recent literature, the myeloma study group of the Belgian Hematology Society has revised the consensus recommendations on myeloma care, to be used by haematologists as a reference for daily practice. When applicable, comments with regards to the Belgian reimbursement modalities are included. The full text with appendices can be downloaded from the Belgian Hematology Society website (www.bhs.be) and from the Belgium Journal of Hematology website (www.ariez.com).

(BELG J HEMATOL 2014;5(4):125–36)

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