Journal of hematology & oncology

A meta-analysis of CAG (cytarabine, aclarubicin, G-CSF) regimen for the treatment of 1029 patients with acute myeloid leukemia and myelodysplastic syndrome.

PMID 22082134


The regimen of cytarabine, aclarubicin and G-CSF (CAG) has been widely used in China and Japan for treatment of acute myeloid leukemia (AML) and myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS). We searched literature on CAG between 1995 and 2010 and performed a meta-analysis to determine its overall efficacy using a random-effects or fixed-effects model. Thirty five trials with a total of 1029 AML (n = 814) and MDS (n = 215) patients were included for analysis. The CR rate of AML (57.9%) was significantly higher than that of MDS (45.7%) (p < 0.01). No difference in CR was noted between the new (56.7%) and relapsed/refractory AML (60.1%) (p > 0.05). The CR rate was also significantly higher in patients with favorable (64.5%) and intermediate (69.6%) karyotypes than those with unfavorable one (29.5%) (p < 0.05). Remarkably, the CR rate of CAG was significantly higher than those of non-CAG regimens (odds ratio 2.43). CAG regimen was well tolerated, with cardiotoxicity in 2.3% and early death in 5.2% of the cases. In conclusion, CAG regimen was an effective and safe regimen for the treatment of AML, and may be more effective than non-CAG regimens. Randomized controlled trials are strongly recommended to evaluate its efficacy and safety in comparison with the current standard treatment.