Among patients with relapsed/refractory (RR) marginal zone lymphoma (MZL), zanubrutinib appears to yield both a high overall response rate (ORR) and complete response (CR) rate, according to research published in Clinical Cancer Research.

Previous research suggests that MZL, a subtype of non-Hodgkin lymphoma, is dependent on B-cell receptor signaling. Zanubrutinib, a next-generation selective inhibitor of Bruton tyrosine kinase, has shown promise in other non-Hodgkin lymphoma settings, including chronic lymphocytic leukemia and mantle cell lymphoma. For this study, researchers evaluated the safety and efficacy of zanubrutinib among patients with R/R MZL.

Overall, 68 patients were enrolled and treated in this trial. The median patient age was 70 years (range, 37-95), 52.9% of patients were male, 57.4% of patients had a performance status of 0, and 77.9% of patients had extranodal disease. The median number of prior therapy lines was 2 (range, 1-6).

Continue Reading

The median follow-up was 15.7 months. At median follow-up, the independent review committee-assessed ORR was 68.2%; the CR rate was 25.8%. Neither the median duration of response nor the median progression-free survival were reached, though the independent review committee–assessed 12-month duration of response rate was 93%, while the 15-month progression-free survival rate was 82.5%.

Common adverse events included diarrhea (22.1%), contusion (20.6%), and constipation (14.7%); 1 patient had grade 3 hypertension and 2 patients had atrial fibrillation/flutter.

“As a selective [Bruton tyrosine kinase] inhibitor, zanubrutinib also appears to demonstrate an improved safety and tolerability profile over existing treatment options,” the authors wrote. “Taken together, the safety and efficacy results of this study represent a potentially clinically meaningful addition to available therapies in patients with R/R MZL.”

Disclosure: The study author(s) declared affiliations with biotech, pharmaceutical, and/or device companies. Please see the original reference for a full list of authors’ disclosures. 


Opat S, Tedeschi A, Linton K, et al. The Magnolia trial: zanubrutinib, a next-generation bruton tyrosine kinase inhibitor, demonstrates safety and efficacy in relapsed/refractory marginal zone lymphoma. Clin Cancer Res. Published online September 15, 2021. doi:10.1158/1078-0432.CCR-21-1704