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Education and Training:

A.B., Yale University (1968)

M.D., Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD (1972)

Intern in Medicine, New York University, Bellevue Medical Center, New York, NY (1972-73)

Resident in Medicine, New York University, Bellevue Medical Center, New York, NY (1973-76)

Chief Resident in Neurology, New York University, Bellevue Medical Center, New York, NY (1976-78)

Fellow, Department of Developmental Therapeutics, University of Texas M.D. Anderson Hospital, Houston, TX (1978-80)

Elihu H. Estey, M.D.
Professor of Medicine, Division of Hematology
University of Washington School of Medicine

Member and Director of AML Clinical Research (non-transplant)
Clinical Research Division, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center

Office Address:
Seattle Cancer Center Alliance
UW Box 358081, Mailstop G3-200
825 Eastlake Ave. E.
Seattle, WA 98109

Phone:  (206) 288-7176
Fax:      (206) 288-6473
E-mail:  eestey@u.washington.edu


Acute myeloid leukemia (AML)


1.  Clinical trials in AML, particularly those involving new research designs
2.  Management of patients with AML


1.  New designs for clinical trials - patients and physician are poorly served by the current phase 1-phase 2-phase 3 paradigm. I am interested in methodology that (a) simultaneously monitors multiple endpoints (such as response and toxicity, or CR and survival), and (b) focuses on small randomized trials to select a therapy to move to a later stage of testing; although such play-the-winner trials are often viewed as "underpowered" they can be shown to be preferable to trials that test only 1 new therapy, because the latter ignore that the worst false negative results from not studying a drug at all, given the role of empiricism in drug development.

2.   Numerous questions face clinicians caring for patients with AML. For example, is it reasonable to discharge a patient with a low neutrophil count, is a day 14 marrow really necessary, how well do I know this patients' prognosis with standard therapy?  Oftentimes answers to these questions are based more on convention than data. Hence we aim to collect and analyze data to answer these type questions.


Estey E, Thall PF:  New designs for phase II clinical trials. Blood 102:442-448, 2003.

Giles FJ, Kantarjian HM, Cortes JE, Garcia-Manero G, Verstovsek S, Faderl S, Thomas DA, Ferrajoli A, O’Brien S, Wathen JK, Xiao L-C, Berry DA, Estey EH.  Adaptive randomized study of Idarubicin and Cytarabine versus Troxacitabine and Cytarabine versus Troxacitabine and Idarubicin in untreated patients 50 years or older with adverse karyotype acute myeloid leukemia. J. Clin. Oncol. 21:1722-1727, 2003.

Estey E, Garcia-Manero G, Ferrajoli A, Faderl S, Verstovsek S, Jones D, Kantarjian H.  Use of all-trans retinoic acid plus arsenic trioxide as an alternative to chemotherapy in untreated acute promyelocytic leukemia. Blood 107:3469-3473, 2006.

Estey E, Dohner H. Acute myeloid leukemia. Lancet 368:1894-1907, 2006.

Appelbaum FR, Kopecky KJ, Tallman MS, Slovak ML, Gundacker HM, Kim HT, Dewald GW, Kantarjian HM, Pierce SR, Estey EH.  The clinical spectrum of adult acute myeloid leukemia associated with core binding factor translocations. Br. J. Haematol. 135:165-173, 2006.

Estey E. Acute myeloid leukemia and myelodysplastic syndromes in older patients. J. Clin. Oncol. 25:1908-1915, 2007.

Estey E, de Lima M, Tibes R, Pierce S, Kantarjian H, Champlin R, Giralt S. Prospective feasibility analysis of reduced intensity conditioning (RIC) regimens for hematopoetic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) in elderly patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) and high-risk myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS). Blood 109:1395-1400, 2007

Estey E.  "Fairest of them all" for myelodysplastic syndromes.  Blood 111:6, 2008.

Thall P, Nguyen H, Estey E.  Patient-specific dose finding based on bivariate outcomes and covariates. Biometrics 64:1126-36, 2008. 

Gardner A, Mattiuzzi G, Faderl S, Borthakur G, Garcia-Manero G, Pierce S, Brandt M, Estey ERandomized comparison of “neutropenic” and non-neutropenic diet in patients undergoing  remission induction therapy for acute myeloid leukemia . J. Clin. Oncol. 26:5684-5688, 2008.

Sekeres M, Elson P, Kalaycio, Advani A, Copelan E, Faderl S, Kantarjian H, Estey  E.  Time from diagnosis to treatment initiation predicts survival in younger, but not older, acute myeloid leukemia patients. Blood 113:28-36, 2009.

Armistead PM, de Lima M, Pierce S, Qiao W, Wang X, Thall PF, Giralt S, Ravandi F, Kantarjian H, Champlin R, Estey E. Quantifying the survival benefit for allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation in relapsed acute myelogenous leukemia.  Biol Blood Marrow Transplant. 15:1431-8, 2009.

Dohner H, Estey EH, Amadori S, Appelbaum FR, Buchner T, Burnett AK, Dombret H, Fenaux P, Grimwade D, Larson RA, Lo Coco F, Naoe T, Niederwieser D, Ossenkoppele GJ, Sanz MA, Sierra J, Tallman MS, Lowenberg B, and Bloomfield CD.  Diagnosis and management of acute myeloid leukemia in adults: recommendations from an international expert panel, on behalf of the European LeukemiaNet.  Blood 115:453-474, 2010.

Walter R, Kantarjian H, Huang X, Pierce S, Sun X,Gundaker H, Ravandi F, Faderl S,Tallman M, Appelbaum F, Estey EThe effect of complete remission(CR) and CR with incomplete platelet recovery on outcome in acute myeloid leukemia: a combined Eastern Cooperative Oncology group, Southwest Oncology Group and M.D. Anderson cancer center study,  J. Clin. Oncol. 28:1766-1771, 2010.

Walter R, Appelbaum F, Tallman M, Weiss N, Larson R, Estey EShortcomings in the clinical evaluation of new drugs: acute myeloid leukemia as paradigm. Blood 116:2420-2428, 2010.

Estey EHigh cytogenetic or molecular genetic risk AML. Hematology Am. Soc. Hematol. Educ. Program 474-481, 2010.

Schanz J, Steidl C, Fonatsch C, Pfeilstöcker M, Nösslinger T, Tuechler H, Valent P, Hildebrandt B, Giagounidis A, Aul C, Lübbert M, Stauder R, Krieger O, Garcia-Manero G, Kantarjian H, Germing U, Haase D, Estey E.  Coalesced multicentric analysis of 2,351 patients with myelodysplastic syndromes indicates an underestimation of poor-risk cytogenetics of myelodysplastic syndromes in the international prognostic scoring system.  J. Clin. Oncol. 29:1963-1970, 2011.

Estey E.  Newly diagnosed acute promyelocytic leukemia: arsenic moves front and center.  J. Clin. Oncol. 29:2743-2746, 2011.

Becker PS, Kantarjian HM, Appelbaum FR, Petersdorf SH, Storer B, Pierce S, Shan J, Hendrie PC, Pagel JM, Shustov AR, Stirewalt DL, Faderl S, Harrington E, Estey EH.  Clofarabine with high dose cytarabine and granulocyte colony stimulating factor priming for relapsed and refractory AMLrabine with high dose cytarabine and granulocyte colony-stimulating factor (G-CSF) priming for relapsed and refractory acute myeloid leukaemia.  Br. J. Haematol. 2011.

Walter R, Lee S, Gardner K, Chai X, Shannon- Dorcy K, Applebaum F, Estey E.  Outpatient management following intensive induction chemotherapy for myelodysplastic syndromes and acute myeloid leukemia: a pilot study. Haematologica 96:914-917, 2011.

Walter R, Othus M, Bortahkur G, Ravandi F, Cortes J, Pierce S, Appelbaum F, Kantarjain H, Estey E:  Prediction of early death following induction therapy for newly diagnosed AML with pretreatment risk scores: a novel paradigm for treatment assignment. J. Clin. Oncol. 29:4417-4423, 2011.

Estey E.  How to manage high-risk acute myeloid leukemia. Leukemia 26(5):861-869, 2012.

Estey EBe Quick But Don't Hurry.  Blood 119:5342-5343, 2012.

Estey ETreatment of AML : Resurrection for Gemtuzumab Ozogamicin. Lancet 379:1468-1469, 2012.

Estey EBeIntensity  of Conditioning for Allogeneic Hematopoetic Cell Transplant in First Complete Remission of Acute Myeloid Leukemia. Lancet Oncology (in press).