A Case of Complete and Durable Molecular Remission of Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia Following Treatment with Epigallocatechin-3-gallate, an Extract of Green Tea.
Cureus. 2015 ;7(12):e441. Epub 2015 Dec 29. PMID: 26858922
We report the case of a 48-year-old man who achieved a complete molecular remission 20 years after a diagnosis of chronic lymphocytic leukemia while using epigallicatechin-3-gallate, an extract of green tea. The patient presented at age 28 with lymphocytosis, mild anemia, mild thrombocytopenia, and massive splenomegaly, for which a splenectomy was performed. He was then followed expectantly. Over the next two decades, he suffered two symptomatic chronic lymphocytic leukemia-related events. The first occurred twelve years after diagnosis (at age 40) when the patient developed fevers, night sweats, and moderate anemia. He was diagnosed with autoimmune hemolytic anemia secondary to chronic lymphocytic leukemia. The patient declined conventional therapy in favor of a diet, exercise, and supplement regimen, and recovered from the autoimmune hemolytic anemia though the underlying chronic lymphocytic leukemia remained evident. This is the first publishedcase report of"spontaneous"recovery from secondary autoimmune hemolytic anemia in an adult. Over the second decade following chronic lymphocytic leukemia diagnosis, serial bone marrow biopsies demonstrated increasing lymphocytosis, with minimal peripheral lymphocytosis. However, twenty years after diagnosis, peripheral lymphocytosis accelerated, with white blood cell counts rising to 55,000/µL. Because the patient continued to refuse conventional therapy, he was treated instead with a supplement regimen that included high doses of epigallocatechin-3-gallate, a green tea extract. Peripheral lymphocytosis resolved. More remarkably, a bone marrow examination, including flow cytometry, showed no evidence of a malignant clone. Two years later (at age 51), the peripheral blood and bone marrow were without molecular evidence of chronic lymphocytic leukemia or any malignancy. The patient remains well at age 52.