Introduction: Low-grade gliomas (LGG) encompass a heterogeneous group of tumors that are clinically, histologically and molecularly diverse. Treatment decisions for patients with LGG are directed toward improving upon the natural history while limiting treatment-associated toxic
effects. Recent evidence has documented a utility for adjuvant chemotherapy with procarbazine, CCNU (lomustine), and vincristine (PCV) or temozolomide (TMZ). We sought to determine the comparative utility of PCV and TMZ for patients with LGG, particularly in context of molecular subtype.
Methods: A literature search of PubMed was conducted to identify studies reporting patient response to PCV, TMZ, or a combination of chemotherapy and radiation therapy (RT). Eligibility criteria included patients 16 years of age and older, notation of LGG subtype, and report of progression-free survival (PFS), overall survival (OS), and treatment course. Level I, II, and III data were included.
Results: Adjuvant therapy with PCV resulted in prolonged PFS and OS in patients with newly diagnosed high-risk LGG. This benefit was accrued most significantly by patients with tumors harboring 1p/19q codeletion and IDH1 mutation. Adjuvant therapy with temozolomide was associated with lower toxicity than therapy with PCV.
Conclusions: In patients with LGG with an unfavorable natural history, such as with intact 1p/19q and wild-type IDH1, RT/TMZ plus adjuvant TMZ may be the best option. Patients with biologically favorable high-risk LGG are likely to derive the most benefit from RT and adjuvant PCV.
Patient Care: This study should provide a reference for clinicians when deciding on the treatment regime of patients with low-grade glioma.
Learning Objectives: By the conclusion of this session, participants should have a well-rounded understanding of what the literature has shown in terms of survival outcomes in the use of chemotherapy in treating low-grade glioma.