First name
Brian
Middle name
T
Last name
Fisher

Title

A Population-Based Study of the Long-Term Risk of Infections Associated With Hospitalization in Childhood Cancer Survivors.

Year of Publication

2023

Number of Pages

364-372

Date Published

01/2023

ISSN Number

1527-7755

Abstract

PURPOSE: Infections pose a significant risk during therapy for childhood cancer. However, little is known about the risk of infection in long-term survivors of childhood cancer.

METHODS: We performed a retrospective observational study of children and adolescents born in Washington State diagnosed with cancer before age 20 years and who survived at least 5 years after diagnosis. Survivors were categorized as having a hematologic or nonhematologic malignancy and were matched to individuals without cancer in the state birth records by birth year and sex with a comparator:survivor ratio of 10:1. The primary outcome was incidence of any infection associated with a hospitalization using diagnostic codes from state hospital discharge records. Incidence was reported as a rate (IR) per 1,000 person-years. Multivariate Poisson regression was used to calculate incidence rate ratios (IRR) for cancer survivors versus comparators.

RESULTS: On the basis of 382 infection events among 3,152 survivors and 771 events among 31,519 comparators, the IR of all hospitalized infections starting 5 years after cancer diagnosis was 12.6 (95% CI, 11.4 to 13.9) and 2.4 (95% CI, 2.3 to 2.6), respectively, with an IRR 5.1 (95% CI, 4.5 to 5.8). The survivor IR during the 5- to 10-year (18.1, 95% CI, 15.9 to 20.5) and > 10-year postcancer diagnosis (8.3, 95% CI, 7.0 to 9.7) periods remained greater than comparison group IRs for the same time periods (2.3, 95% CI, 2.1 to 2.6 and 2.5, 95% CI, 2.3 to 2.8, respectively). When potentially vaccine-preventable infections were evaluated, survivors had a greater risk of infection relative to comparators (IRR, 13.1; 95% CI, 7.2 to 23.9).

CONCLUSION: Infectious complications continue to affect survivors of childhood cancer many years after initial diagnosis. Future studies are needed to better understand immune reconstitution to determine specific factors that may mitigate this risk.

DOI

10.1200/JCO.22.00230

Alternate Title

J Clin Oncol

PMID

35878085

Title

Prospective Evaluation of the Fungitell® (1→3) Beta-D-Glucan Assay as a Diagnostic Tool for Invasive Fungal Disease in Pediatric Allogeneic Hematopoietic Cell Transplantation: A Report from the Children's Oncology Group.

Year of Publication

2023

Number of Pages

e14399

Date Published

02/2023

ISSN Number

1399-3046

Abstract

BACKGROUND: Invasive fungal disease (IFD) is a major source of morbidity and mortality for hematopoietic cell transplant (HCT) recipients. Non-invasive biomarkers, such as the beta-D-glucan assay, may improve the diagnosis of IFD. The objective was to define the utility of surveillance testing using Fungitell® beta-D-glucan (BDG) assay in children receiving antifungal prophylaxis in the immediate post-HCT period.

METHODS: Weekly surveillance blood testing with the Fungitell® BDG assay was performed during the early post-HCT period in the context of a randomized trial of children, adolescents, and young adults undergoing allogeneic HCT allocated to triazole or caspofungin prophylaxis. Positivity was defined at the manufacturer cutoff of 80 pg/ml. IFD was adjudicated using blinded central reviewers. The sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value (PPV), and negative predictive value (NPV) were calculated for the Fungitell® BDG assay for the outcome of proven or probable IFD.

RESULTS: A total of 51 patients (out of 290 patients in the parent trial) contributed blood specimens. In total, 278 specimens were evaluated. Specificity was 80.8% (95% confidence interval [CI]: 75.6%-85.3%), and NPV was over 99% (95% CI: 86.8%-99.9%). However, there were no true positive results, resulting in sensitivity of 0% (95% CI: 0.0%-84.2%) and PPV of 0% (95% CI: 0.0%-6.7%).

CONCLUSIONS: Fungitell® BDG screening is of limited utility in diagnosing IFD in the post-HCT period, mainly due to high false-positive rates. Fungitell® BDG surveillance testing should not be performed in children during the early post-HCT period while receiving antifungal prophylaxis as the pretest probability for IFD is low.

DOI

10.1111/petr.14399

Alternate Title

Pediatr Transplant

PMID

36299233

Title

Absolute lymphocyte count recovery following initial acute myelogenous leukemia therapy: Implications for adoptive cell therapy.

Year of Publication

2022

Number of Pages

e30062

Date Published

11/2022

ISSN Number

1545-5017

Abstract

BACKGROUND: An adequate absolute lymphocyte count (ALC) is an essential first step in autologous chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T-cell manufacturing. For patients with acute myelogenous leukemia (AML), the intensity of chemotherapy received may affect adequate ALC recovery required for CAR T-cell production. We sought to analyze ALC following each course of upfront therapy as one metric for CAR T-cell manufacturing feasibility in children and young adults with AML.

PROCEDURE: ALC data were collected from an observational study of patients with newly diagnosed AML between the ages of 1 month and 21 years who received treatment between the years of 2006 and 2018 at one of three hospitals in the Leukemia Electronic Abstraction of Records Network (LEARN) consortium.

RESULTS: Among 193 patients with sufficient ALC data for analysis, the median ALC following induction 1 was 1715 cells/μl (interquartile range: 1166-2388), with successive decreases in ALC with each subsequent course. Similarly, the proportion of patients achieving an ALC >400 cells/μl decreased following each course, ranging from 98.4% (190/193) after course 1 to 66.7% (22/33) for patients who received a fifth course of therapy.

CONCLUSIONS: There is a successive decline of ALC recovery with subsequent courses of chemotherapy. Despite this decline, ALC values are likely sufficient to consider apheresis prior to the initiation of each course of upfront therapy for the majority of newly diagnosed pediatric AML patients, thereby providing a window of opportunity for T-cell collection for those patients identified at high risk of relapse or with refractory disease.

DOI

10.1002/pbc.30062

Alternate Title

Pediatr Blood Cancer

PMID

36370087

Title

Challenges in the Treatment of Invasive Aspergillosis in Immunocompromised Children.

Year of Publication

2022

Number of Pages

e0215621

Date Published

06/2022

ISSN Number

1098-6596

Abstract

Invasive aspergillosis (IA) is associated with significant morbidity and mortality. Voriconazole remains the drug of choice for the treatment of IA in children; however, the complex kinetics of voriconazole in children make dosing challenging and therapeutic drug monitoring (TDM) essential for treatment success. The overarching goal of this review is to discuss the role of voriconazole, posaconazole, isavuconazole, liposomal amphotericin B, echinocandins, and combination antifungal therapy for the treatment of IA in children. We also provide a detailed discussion of antifungal TDM in children.

DOI

10.1128/aac.02156-21

Alternate Title

Antimicrob Agents Chemother

PMID

35766509

Title

Rates of laboratory adverse events by course in paediatric leukaemia ascertained with automated electronic health record extraction: a retrospective cohort study from the Children's Oncology Group.

Year of Publication

2022

Number of Pages

e678-e688

Date Published

07/2022

ISSN Number

2352-3026

Abstract

BACKGROUND: Adverse events are often misreported in clinical trials, leading to an incomplete understanding of toxicities. We aimed to test automated laboratory adverse event ascertainment and grading (via the ExtractEHR automated package) to assess its scalability and define adverse event rates for children with acute myeloid leukaemia and acute lymphoblastic leukaemia.

METHODS: For this retrospective cohort study from the Children's Oncology Group (COG), we included patients aged 0-22 years treated for acute myeloid leukaemia or acute lymphoblastic leukaemia at Children's Healthcare of Atlanta (Atlanta, GA, USA) from Jan 1, 2010, to Nov 1, 2018, at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (Philadelphia, PA, USA) from Jan 1, 2011, to Dec 31, 2014, and at the Texas Children's Hospital (Houston, TX, USA) from Jan 1, 2011, to Dec 31, 2014. The ExtractEHR automated package acquired, cleaned, and graded laboratory data as per Common Terminology Criteria for Adverse Events (CTCAE) version 5 for 22 commonly evaluated grade 3-4 adverse events (fatal events were not evaluated) with numerically based CTCAE definitions. Descriptive statistics tabulated adverse event frequencies. Adverse events ascertained by ExtractEHR were compared to manually reported adverse events for patients enrolled in two COG trials (AAML1031, NCT01371981; AALL0932, NCT02883049). Analyses were restricted to protocol-defined chemotherapy courses (induction I, induction II, intensification I, intensification II, and intensification III for acute myeloid leukaemia; induction, consolidation, interim maintenance, delayed intensification, and maintenance for acute lymphoblastic leukaemia).

FINDINGS: Laboratory adverse event data from 1077 patients (583 from Children's Healthcare of Atlanta, 200 from the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, and 294 from the Texas Children's Hospital) who underwent 4611 courses (549 for acute myeloid leukaemia and 4062 for acute lymphoblastic leukaemia) were extracted, processed, and graded. Of the 166 patients with acute myeloid leukaemia, 86 (52%) were female, 80 (48%) were male, 96 (58%) were White, and 132 (80%) were non-Hispanic. Of the 911 patients with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia, 406 (45%) were female, 505 (55%) were male, 596 (65%) were White, and 641 (70%) were non-Hispanic. Patients with acute myeloid leukaemia had the most adverse events during induction I and intensification II. Hypokalaemia (one [17%] of six to 75 [48%] of 156 courses) and alanine aminotransferase (ALT) increased (13 [10%] of 134 to 27 [17%] of 156 courses) were the most prevalent non-haematological adverse events in patients with acute myeloid leukaemia, as identified by ExtractEHR. Patients with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia had the greatest number of adverse events during induction and maintenance (eight adverse events with prevalence ≥10%; induction and maintenance: anaemia, platelet count decreased, white blood cell count decreased, neutrophil count decreased, lymphocyte count decreased, ALT increased, and hypocalcaemia; induction: hypokalaemia; maintenance: aspartate aminotransferase [AST] increased and blood bilirubin increased), as identified by ExtractEHR. 187 (85%) of 220 total comparisons in 22 adverse events in four AAML1031 and six AALL0923 courses were substantially higher with ExtractEHR than COG-reported adverse event rates for adverse events with a prevalence of at least 2%.

INTERPRETATION: ExtractEHR is scalable and accurately defines laboratory adverse event rates for paediatric acute leukaemia; moreover, ExtractEHR seems to detect higher rates of laboratory adverse events than those reported in COG trials. These rates can be used for comparisons between therapies and to counsel patients treated on or off trials about the risks of chemotherapy. ExtractEHR-based adverse event ascertainment can improve reporting of laboratory adverse events in clinical trials.

FUNDING: US National Institutes of Health, St Baldrick's Foundation, and Alex's Lemonade Stand Foundation.

DOI

10.1016/S2352-3026(22)00168-5

Alternate Title

Lancet Haematol

PMID

35870472

Title

Rates of laboratory adverse events by course in paediatric leukaemia ascertained with automated electronic health record extraction: a retrospective cohort study from the Children's Oncology Group.

Year of Publication

2022

Number of Pages

e678-e688

Date Published

07/2022

ISSN Number

2352-3026

Abstract

BACKGROUND: Adverse events are often misreported in clinical trials, leading to an incomplete understanding of toxicities. We aimed to test automated laboratory adverse event ascertainment and grading (via the ExtractEHR automated package) to assess its scalability and define adverse event rates for children with acute myeloid leukaemia and acute lymphoblastic leukaemia.

METHODS: For this retrospective cohort study from the Children's Oncology Group (COG), we included patients aged 0-22 years treated for acute myeloid leukaemia or acute lymphoblastic leukaemia at Children's Healthcare of Atlanta (Atlanta, GA, USA) from Jan 1, 2010, to Nov 1, 2018, at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (Philadelphia, PA, USA) from Jan 1, 2011, to Dec 31, 2014, and at the Texas Children's Hospital (Houston, TX, USA) from Jan 1, 2011, to Dec 31, 2014. The ExtractEHR automated package acquired, cleaned, and graded laboratory data as per Common Terminology Criteria for Adverse Events (CTCAE) version 5 for 22 commonly evaluated grade 3-4 adverse events (fatal events were not evaluated) with numerically based CTCAE definitions. Descriptive statistics tabulated adverse event frequencies. Adverse events ascertained by ExtractEHR were compared to manually reported adverse events for patients enrolled in two COG trials (AAML1031, NCT01371981; AALL0932, NCT02883049). Analyses were restricted to protocol-defined chemotherapy courses (induction I, induction II, intensification I, intensification II, and intensification III for acute myeloid leukaemia; induction, consolidation, interim maintenance, delayed intensification, and maintenance for acute lymphoblastic leukaemia).

FINDINGS: Laboratory adverse event data from 1077 patients (583 from Children's Healthcare of Atlanta, 200 from the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, and 294 from the Texas Children's Hospital) who underwent 4611 courses (549 for acute myeloid leukaemia and 4062 for acute lymphoblastic leukaemia) were extracted, processed, and graded. Of the 166 patients with acute myeloid leukaemia, 86 (52%) were female, 80 (48%) were male, 96 (58%) were White, and 132 (80%) were non-Hispanic. Of the 911 patients with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia, 406 (45%) were female, 505 (55%) were male, 596 (65%) were White, and 641 (70%) were non-Hispanic. Patients with acute myeloid leukaemia had the most adverse events during induction I and intensification II. Hypokalaemia (one [17%] of six to 75 [48%] of 156 courses) and alanine aminotransferase (ALT) increased (13 [10%] of 134 to 27 [17%] of 156 courses) were the most prevalent non-haematological adverse events in patients with acute myeloid leukaemia, as identified by ExtractEHR. Patients with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia had the greatest number of adverse events during induction and maintenance (eight adverse events with prevalence ≥10%; induction and maintenance: anaemia, platelet count decreased, white blood cell count decreased, neutrophil count decreased, lymphocyte count decreased, ALT increased, and hypocalcaemia; induction: hypokalaemia; maintenance: aspartate aminotransferase [AST] increased and blood bilirubin increased), as identified by ExtractEHR. 187 (85%) of 220 total comparisons in 22 adverse events in four AAML1031 and six AALL0923 courses were substantially higher with ExtractEHR than COG-reported adverse event rates for adverse events with a prevalence of at least 2%.

INTERPRETATION: ExtractEHR is scalable and accurately defines laboratory adverse event rates for paediatric acute leukaemia; moreover, ExtractEHR seems to detect higher rates of laboratory adverse events than those reported in COG trials. These rates can be used for comparisons between therapies and to counsel patients treated on or off trials about the risks of chemotherapy. ExtractEHR-based adverse event ascertainment can improve reporting of laboratory adverse events in clinical trials.

FUNDING: US National Institutes of Health, St Baldrick's Foundation, and Alex's Lemonade Stand Foundation.

DOI

10.1016/S2352-3026(22)00168-5

Alternate Title

Lancet Haematol

PMID

35870472

Title

A Population-Based Study of the Long-Term Risk of Infections Associated With Hospitalization in Childhood Cancer Survivors.

Year of Publication

2022

Number of Pages

JCO2200230

Date Published

07/2022

ISSN Number

1527-7755

Abstract

PURPOSE: Infections pose a significant risk during therapy for childhood cancer. However, little is known about the risk of infection in long-term survivors of childhood cancer.

METHODS: We performed a retrospective observational study of children and adolescents born in Washington State diagnosed with cancer before age 20 years and who survived at least 5 years after diagnosis. Survivors were categorized as having a hematologic or nonhematologic malignancy and were matched to individuals without cancer in the state birth records by birth year and sex with a comparator:survivor ratio of 10:1. The primary outcome was incidence of any infection associated with a hospitalization using diagnostic codes from state hospital discharge records. Incidence was reported as a rate (IR) per 1,000 person-years. Multivariate Poisson regression was used to calculate incidence rate ratios (IRR) for cancer survivors versus comparators.

RESULTS: On the basis of 382 infection events among 3,152 survivors and 771 events among 31,519 comparators, the IR of all hospitalized infections starting 5 years after cancer diagnosis was 12.6 (95% CI, 11.4 to 13.9) and 2.4 (95% CI, 2.3 to 2.6), respectively, with an IRR 5.1 (95% CI, 4.5 to 5.8). The survivor IR during the 5- to 10-year (18.1, 95% CI, 15.9 to 20.5) and > 10-year postcancer diagnosis (8.3, 95% CI, 7.0 to 9.7) periods remained greater than comparison group IRs for the same time periods (2.3, 95% CI, 2.1 to 2.6 and 2.5, 95% CI, 2.3 to 2.8, respectively). When potentially vaccine-preventable infections were evaluated, survivors had a greater risk of infection relative to comparators (IRR, 13.1; 95% CI, 7.2 to 23.9).

CONCLUSION: Infectious complications continue to affect survivors of childhood cancer many years after initial diagnosis. Future studies are needed to better understand immune reconstitution to determine specific factors that may mitigate this risk.

DOI

10.1200/JCO.22.00230

Alternate Title

J Clin Oncol

PMID

35878085

Title

Prospective Evaluation of Galactomannan and (1→3) β-d-Glucan Assays as Diagnostic Tools for Invasive Fungal Disease in Children, Adolescents, and Young Adults With Acute Myeloid Leukemia Receiving Fungal Prophylaxis.

Year of Publication

2021

Date Published

2021 Jun 26

ISSN Number

2048-7207

Abstract

BACKGROUND: Patients receiving chemotherapy for acute myeloid leukemia (AML) are at high risk for invasive fungal disease (IFD). Diagnosis of IFD is challenging, leading to interest in fungal biomarkers. The objective was to define the utility of surveillance testing with Platelia Aspergillus galactomannan (GM) enzyme immunoassay (EIA) and Fungitell β-d-glucan (BDG) assay in children with AML receiving antifungal prophylaxis.

METHODS: Twice-weekly surveillance blood testing with GM EIA and BDG assay was performed during periods of neutropenia in the context of a randomized trial of children, adolescents, and young adults with AML allocated to fluconazole or caspofungin prophylaxis. Proven or probable IFD was adjudicated using blinded central reviewers. The sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value (PPV), and negative predictive value (NPV) were calculated for Platelia and Fungitell assays alone and in combination for the outcomes of proven and probable invasive aspergillosis (IA) or invasive candidiasis (IC).

RESULTS: Among 471 patients enrolled, 425 participants (209 fluconazole and 216 caspofungin) contributed ≥1 blood specimen. In total, 6103 specimens were evaluated, with a median of 15 specimens per patient (range 1-43). The NPV was >99% for GM EIA and BDG assay alone and in combination. However, there were no true positive results, resulting in sensitivity and PPV for each assay of 0%.

CONCLUSIONS: The GM EIA and the BDG assay alone or in combination were not successful at detecting IA or IC during periods of neutropenia in children, adolescents, and young adults with AML receiving antifungal prophylaxis. Utilization of these assays for surveillance in this clinical setting should be discouraged.

DOI

10.1093/jpids/piab036

Alternate Title

J Pediatric Infect Dis Soc

PMID

34173659

Title

Risk of bacterial bloodstream infection does not vary by central-line type during neutropenic periods in pediatric acute myeloid leukemia.

Year of Publication

2022

Number of Pages

1-8

Date Published

2022 Apr 25

ISSN Number

1559-6834

Abstract

<p><strong>BACKGROUND: </strong>Bloodstream infections (BSIs) are a frequent cause of morbidity in patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML), due in part to the presence of central venous access devices (CVADs) required to deliver therapy.</p>

<p><strong>OBJECTIVE: </strong>To determine the differential risk of bacterial BSI during neutropenia by CVAD type in pediatric patients with AML.</p>

<p><strong>METHODS: </strong>We performed a secondary analysis in a cohort of 560 pediatric patients (1,828 chemotherapy courses) receiving frontline AML chemotherapy at 17 US centers. The exposure was CVAD type at course start: tunneled externalized catheter (TEC), peripherally inserted central catheter (PICC), or totally implanted catheter (TIC). The primary outcome was course-specific incident bacterial BSI; secondary outcomes included mucosal barrier injury (MBI)-BSI and non-MBI BSI. Poisson regression was used to compute adjusted rate ratios comparing BSI occurrence during neutropenia by line type, controlling for demographic, clinical, and hospital-level characteristics.</p>

<p><strong>RESULTS: </strong>The rate of BSI did not differ by CVAD type: 11 BSIs per 1,000 neutropenic days for TECs, 13.7 for PICCs, and 10.7 for TICs. After adjustment, there was no statistically significant association between CVAD type and BSI: PICC incident rate ratio [IRR] = 1.00 (95% confidence interval [CI], 0.75-1.32) and TIC IRR = 0.83 (95% CI, 0.49-1.41) compared to TEC. When MBI and non-MBI were examined separately, results were similar.</p>

<p><strong>CONCLUSIONS: </strong>In this large, multicenter cohort of pediatric AML patients, we found no difference in the rate of BSI during neutropenia by CVAD type. This may be due to a risk-profile for BSI that is unique to AML patients.</p>

DOI

10.1017/ice.2022.82

Alternate Title

Infect Control Hosp Epidemiol

PMID

35465865

Title

Children's Oncology Group Trial AALL1231: A Phase III Clinical Trial Testing Bortezomib in Newly Diagnosed T-Cell Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia and Lymphoma.

Year of Publication

2022

Number of Pages

JCO2102678

Date Published

2022 Mar 10

ISSN Number

1527-7755

Abstract

<p><strong>PURPOSE: </strong>To improve the outcomes of patients with T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (T-ALL) and lymphoblastic lymphoma (T-LL), the proteasome inhibitor bortezomib was examined in the Children's Oncology Group phase III clinical trial AALL1231, which also attempted to reduce the use of prophylactic cranial radiation (CRT) in newly diagnosed T-ALL.</p>

<p><strong>PATIENTS AND METHODS: </strong>Children and young adults with T-ALL/T-LL were randomly assigned to a modified augmented Berlin-Frankfurt-Münster chemotherapy regimen with/without bortezomib during induction and delayed intensification. Multiple modifications were made to the augmented Berlin-Frankfurt-Münster backbone used in the predecessor trial, AALL0434, including using dexamethasone instead of prednisone and adding two extra doses of pegaspargase in an attempt to eliminate CRT in most patients.</p>

<p><strong>RESULTS: </strong>AALL1231 accrued 824 eligible and evaluable patients from 2014 to 2017. The 4-year event-free survival (EFS) and overall survival (OS) for arm A (no bortezomib) versus arm B (bortezomib) were 80.1% ± 2.3% versus 83.8% ± 2.1% (EFS, = .131) and 85.7% ± 2.0% versus 88.3% ± 1.8% (OS, = .085). Patients with T-LL had improved EFS and OS with bortezomib: 4-year EFS (76.5% ± 5.1% 86.4% ± 4.0%; = .041); and 4-year OS (78.3% ± 4.9% 89.5% ± 3.6%; = .009). No excess toxicity was seen with bortezomib. In AALL0434, 90.8% of patients with T-ALL received CRT. In AALL1231, 9.5% of patients were scheduled to receive CRT. Evaluation of comparable AALL0434 patients who received CRT and AALL1231 patients who did not receive CRT demonstrated no statistical differences in EFS ( = .412) and OS ( = .600).</p>

<p><strong>CONCLUSION: </strong>Patients with T-LL had significantly improved EFS and OS with bortezomib on the AALL1231 backbone. Systemic therapy intensification allowed elimination of CRT in more than 90% of patients with T-ALL without excess relapse.</p>

DOI

10.1200/JCO.21.02678

Alternate Title

J Clin Oncol

PMID

35271306

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