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Congratulations to Katharine Lewis for ASH/HSANZ Abstract Award

22 Dec 2021 1:28 PM | Valerie Orton (Administrator)

HSANZ Council congratulates Trainee Member, Katharine Lewis for the distinction of being presented with the ASH/HSANZ Abstract Award. You may have seen her oral presentation last week at the ASH conference.


This is a piece Kat wrote for HSANZ to introduce herself and her work:

My name is Katharine (Kat) Lewis and I came to Perth, WA from the UK for a lymphoma and clinical trials fellowship in late 2018, having completed my specialist examinations and almost all my haematology training in the UK prior to moving over.  In my role here, I’ve gained a broad experience in lymphoma and clinical trials, and treated many patients at Linear Clinical Research and Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital as part of our clinical trials programme, as well as in the public healthcare system.  I’ve been blessed to have lots of research opportunities in my fellowship role, and have recently had the privilege of leading a large international retrospective project investigating the effectiveness of HD-MTX (intravenous methotrexate) at reducing CNS relapse in patients with aggressive B-cell lymphoma at greatest risk of this complication.  We included 2,300 high risk patients in the study, from 21 sites across Australia, Europe, the US and Asia.  In our study, HD-MTX did not reduce rates of CNS relapse in these high risk patients.  CNS relapse is a relatively rare event in aggressive B-cell lymphoma (around 10% in the highest risk patient group), and large studies are required to demonstrate small but meaningful differences in CNS prophylactic strategies in these patients.  Our study is the largest to date, and provides some of the best evidence that HD-MTX is ineffective at preventing CNS relapse for this group of patients.  We anticipate the results will influence global clinical practice, with fewer patients recommended to receive HD-MTX, reducing toxicity and inpatient admissions without increasing CNS relapse risk. 

It’s an honour to receive the ASH-HSANZ award for the study, and to have had the opportunity to give a virtual oral presentation at ASH 2021.


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