Follicular lymphoma (FL) is clinically heterogeneous, with select patients tolerating extended watch-and-wait, whereas others require prompt treatment, suffer progression of disease within 24 months of treatment (POD24), and/or experience aggressive histologic transformation (t-FL). Because our understanding of the relationship between genetic alterations in FL and patient outcomes remains limited, we conducted a clinicogenomic analysis of 370 patients with FL or t-FL (from Cancer and Leukemia Group B/Alliance trials 50402/50701/50803, or real-world cohorts from Washington University School of Medicine, Cleveland Clinic, or University of Miami). FL subsets by grade, stage, watch-and-wait, or POD24 status did not differ by mutation burden, whereas mutation burden was significantly higher in relapsed/refractory (rel/ref) FL and t-FL than in newly diagnosed (dx) FL. Nonetheless, mutation burden in dx FL was not associated with frontline progression-free survival (PFS). CREBBP was the only gene more commonly mutated in FL than in t-FL yet mutated CREBBP was associated with shorter frontline PFS in FL. Mutations in 20 genes were more common in rel/ref FL or t-FL than in dx FL, including 6 significantly mutated genes (SMGs): STAT6, TP53, IGLL5, B2M, SOCS1, and MYD88. We defined a mutations associated with progression (MAP) signature as ≥2 mutations in these 7 genes (6 rel/ref FL or t-FL SMGs plus CREBBP). Patients with dx FL possessing a MAP signature had shorter frontline PFS, revealing a 7-gene set offering insight into FL progression risk potentially more generalizable than the m7–Follicular Lymphoma International Prognostic Index (m7-FLIPI), which had modest prognostic value in our cohort. Future studies are warranted to validate the poor prognosis associated with a MAP signature in dx FL, potentially facilitating novel trials specifically in this high-risk subset of patients.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5524-5539
Number of pages16
JournalBlood Advances
Issue number18
StatePublished - Sep 26 2023


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