Response of canine cutaneous epitheliotropic lymphoma to lomustine (CCNU): A retrospective study of 46 cases (1999-2004)

Rebecca E. Risbon, L. P. De Lorimier, Katherine A Skorupski, K. E. Burgess, P. J. Bergman, J. Carreras, K. Hahn, A. LeBlanc, M. Turek, J. Impellizeri, R. Fred, J. W. Wojcieszyn, K. Drobatz, C. A. Clifford

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63 Scopus citations


Background: Epitheliotropic lymphoma (ELSA) is an uncommon cutaneous canine malignancy of T lymphocytes. A consensus regarding the therapeutic standard of care is lacking, warranting evaluation of chemotherapeutic agents traditionally employed against canine nodal lymphoma in the treatment of ELSA. Hypothesis: The purpose of this retrospective, multi-institutional study was to evaluate the efficacy of 1-(2-chloroethyl)-3-cyclohexyl-1-nitrosourea (CCNU) in the treatment of ELSA. Animals: Forty-six dogs with adequate follow-up and treatment response information. Methods: All cases were diagnosed histopathologically. Immunohistochemisty (CD3, CD79a) was performed on 42/46 samples. Results: Presenting skin lesions included generalized scales (25/46), plaques or nodules (22/46), mucocutaneous lesions (14/ 46), and corneal involvement (1/46). Lymph node involvement and Sézary syndrome were documented in 7 and 2 dogs, respectively. The median number of CCNU treatments was 4 (range, 1-11), with a median starting dose of 60 mg/m2 (range, 30-95). Of the 46 dogs, 15 achieved complete remission, 23 achieved partial remission, 5 had stable disease, and 3 had progressive disease, for an overall response rate of 83%. The median number of treatments to achieve a response was 1 (range, 1-6). The overall median duration of response was 94 days (range, 22-282). Sixteen dose reductions were required because of neutropenia (10/46), thrombocytopenia (1/46), anemia (1/46), increased liver enzyme activity (3/46), or unspecified reasons (1/46). Conclusions and Clinical Implications: Given the high response rate and well tolerated protocol, prospective studies are warranted to investigate the utility of CCNU alone or in multi-agent protocols for the treatment of ELSA.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1389-1397
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Veterinary Internal Medicine
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 2006
Externally publishedYes


  • Alkylator
  • Chemotherapy
  • Epitheliotropic lymphoma
  • Mycosis fungoides
  • Nitrosourea
  • Skin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • veterinary(all)


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