The following article features coverage from the 2021 Annual Meeting of the Society of Hematologic Oncology (SOHO). Click here to read more of Cancer Therapy Advisor’s conference coverage.

A comparative analysis of the chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T-cell therapies tisagenlecleucel (tisa-cel) and lisocabtagene maraleucel (liso-cel) in patients with relapsed/refractory diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL) showed no significant differences in survival outcomes.

The analysis was presented at the Annual Meeting of the Society of Hematologic Oncology (SOHO) by Richard Maziarz, MD, of the Knight Cancer Institute at Oregon Health and Science University in Portland.

Dr Maziarz and colleagues conducted a retrospective analysis using a matching-adjusted indirect comparison (MAIC) method to statistically compare tisa-cel and liso-cel.

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The researchers used individual patient-level data for tisa-cel from the JULIET trial ( Identifier: NCT02445248; 02/2020 data cutoff date) and data for liso-cel from the TRANSCEND NHL 001 trial ( Identifier: NCT02631044; 08/2019 data cutoff date).

“The MAIC analysis uses a propensity score model to assign statistical weight to the JULIET patients and then allows it to match with data available from the TRANSCEND database,” Dr Maziarz explained.

The primary analysis included 106 patients from JULIET and 256 patients from TRANSCEND. At baseline, the JULIET patients were more likely to be younger than 65 years, have DLBCL histology (vs high-grade B-cell lymphoma), have a performance status of 0, and have received a stem cell transplant or bridging chemotherapy (all P <.05).

However, the researchers adjusted for baseline prognostic factors, including patient and disease characteristics as well as prior treatment and response.

After the adjustment, there were no significant differences in outcomes between the tisa-cel and liso-cel groups.

The overall response rate was 62.9% in the tisa-cel group and 72.7% in the liso-cel group (rate difference, -9.7%; 95% CI, -20.0% to 0.6%; P =.07). The complete response rate was 47.7% and 53.1%, respectively (-5.4%; 95% CI, -15.5% to 4.7%; P =.29).  

The median progression-free survival was 9.0 months in the tisa-cel group and 6.8 months in the liso-cel group (hazard ratio [HR], 1.16; 95% CI, 0.64-2.09; P =.63). The median overall survival was 20.7 months and 21.1 months, respectively (HR, 1.12; 95% CI, 0.62-2.05; P =.71).

The researchers also performed sensitivity and scenario analyses, and results were generally consistent with the primary analysis. The only exception was that the overall response rate was significantly higher for liso-cel patients in the scenario analysis.

Dr Maziarz noted that the researchers did not compare safety outcomes with the CAR T-cell therapies because adverse event management was different between the JULIET and TRANSCEND trials.

Disclosures: This research was supported by Novartis. Some study authors declared affiliations with biotech, pharmaceutical, and/or device companies. Please see the original reference for a full list of disclosures.

Read more of Cancer Therapy Advisor’s coverage of SOHO 2021 by visiting the conference page.


Schuster SJ, Zhang J, Yang H, et al. Tisagenlecleucel and lisocabtagene maraleucel: Comparative efficacy in patients with relapsed/refractory diffuse large B-Cell lymphoma. Paper presented at: Annual Meeting of the Society of Hematologic Oncology (SOHO); September 8-11, 2021.