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1.  Cixutumumab and temsirolimus for patients with bone and soft-tissue sarcoma: a multicentre, open-label, phase 2 trial 
The lancet oncology  2013;14(4):371-382.
Summary
Background
Preclinical studies have shown synergistic antitumour activity by inhibition of insulin-like growth factor-1 receptor (IGF-1R) and mTOR. The expression of IGF-1R seems to be crucial for this effect. We investigated the safety and efficacy of the combination of the IGF-1R antibody cixutumumab and the mTOR inhibitor temsirolimus in patients with chemotherapy-refractory bone and soft-tissue sarcomas according to IGF-1R expression by immunohistochemistry.
Methods
We undertook a multicentre, open-label, phase 2 study in 19 cancer centres in the USA. Patients aged at least 16 years with a histologically confirmed diagnosis of bone or soft-tissue sarcoma were allocated on the basis of IGF-1R expression by immunohistochemistry to one of three treatment groups: IGF-1R-positive soft-tissue sarcoma (group A), IGF-1R-positive bone sarcomas (group B), or IGF-1R-negative bone and soft-tissue sarcoma (group C). Patients received weekly treatment with cixutumumab (6 mg/kg, intravenous) and temsirolimus (25 mg, intravenous flat dose) in 6-week cycles. A Simon optimal two-stage design was used for every arm. The primary endpoint was progression-free survival (PFS) at 12 weeks by intention-to-treat analysis in the first 54 patients assigned to every treatment arm. Although patients still remain on treatment, this trial has completed enrolment and this represents the final analysis. This study is registered with ClinicalTrials.gov, number NCT01016015.
Findings
Between Nov 18, 2009, and April 11, 2012, 388 patients were screened for IGF-1R expression and 54 were assigned to each arm. 17 of 54 patients in the IGF-1R-positive soft-tissue sarcoma group (31%; one-sided 95% CI lower bound 21%; two-sided 90% CI 21–43), 19 of 54 in IGF-1R-positive bone sarcoma group (35%; one-sided 95% CI lower bound 24%; two-sided 90% CI 24–47), and 21 of 54 in the IGF-1R-negative group (39%, one-sided 95% CI lower bound 28%; two-sided 90% CI 28–51) were progression free at 12 weeks. On April 6, 2011, the protocol was amended to include three additional patients in the IGF-1R-positive soft-tissue sarcoma group (total of 57 patients) and nine more in the IGF-1R-negative group (total of 63 patients). There were 2546 adverse events reported during the study, 214 (8%) of which were grade 3–4. The most common grade 3–4 toxicities in the 174 treated patients were anaemia in 16 (9%) patients, hyperglycaemia in 18 (10%), hypophosphataemia in 16 (9%), lymphopenia in 25 (14%), oral mucositis in 19 (11%), and thrombocytopenia in 19 (11%).
Interpretation
The combination of cixutumumab and temsirolimus shows clinical activity in patients with sarcoma and forms a basis for future trials. However, IGF-1R expression by immunohistochemistry is not predictive of clinical outcome after treatment with this combination.
Funding
National Cancer Institute and Cycle for Survival Fund, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center.
doi:10.1016/S1470-2045(13)70049-4
PMCID: PMC3766955  PMID: 23477833
2.  Activity and safety of crizotinib in patients with ALK-positive non-small-cell lung cancer: updated results from a phase 1 study 
The lancet oncology  2012;13(10):1011-1019.
Summary
Background
ALK fusion genes occur in a subset of non-small-cell lung cancers (NSCLCs). We assessed the tolerability and activity of crizotinib in patients with NSCLC who were prospectively identified to have an ALK fusion within the first-in-man phase 1 crizotinib study.
Methods
In this phase 1 study, patients with ALK-positive stage III or IV NSCLC received oral crizotinib 250 mg twice daily in 28-day cycles. Endpoints included tumour responses, duration of response, time to tumour response, progression-free survival (PFS), overall survival at 6 and 12 months, and determination of the safety and tolerability and characterisation of the plasma pharmacokinetic profile of crizotinib after oral administration. Responses were analysed in evaluable patients and PFS and safety were analysed in all patients. This study is registered with ClinicalTrials.gov, number NCT00585195.
Findings
Between Aug 27, 2008, and June 1, 2011, 149 ALK-positive patients were enrolled, 143 of whom were included in the response-evaluable population. 87 of 143 patients had an objective response (60·8%, 95% CI 52·3–68·9), including three complete responses and 84 partial responses. Median time to first documented objective response was 7·9 weeks (range 2·1–39·6) and median duration of response was 49·1 weeks (95% CI 39·3–75·4). The response rate seemed to be largely independent of age, sex, performance status, or line of treatment. Median PFS was 9·7 months (95% CI 7·7–12·8). Median overall survival data are not yet mature, but estimated overall survival at 6 and 12 months was 87·9% (95% CI 81·3–92·3) and 74·8% (66·4–81·5), respectively. 39 patients continued to receive crizotinib for more than 2 weeks after progression because of perceived ongoing clinical benefit from the drug (12 for at least 6 months from the time of their initial investigator-defined disease progression). Overall, 144 (97%) of 149 patients experienced treatment-related adverse events, which were mostly grade 1 or 2. The most common adverse events were visual effects, nausea, diarrhoea, constipation, vomiting, and peripheral oedema. The most common treatment-related grade 3 or 4 adverse events were neutropenia (n=9), raised alanine aminotransferase (n=6), hypophosphataemia (n=6), and lymphopenia (n=6).
Interpretation
Crizotinib is well tolerated with rapid, durable responses in patients with ALK-positive NSCLC. There seems to be potential for ongoing benefit after initial disease progression in this population, but a more formal definition of ongoing benefit in this context is needed.
Funding
Pfizer.
doi:10.1016/S1470-2045(12)70344-3
PMCID: PMC3936578  PMID: 22954507
3.  IBCSG 23-01 randomised controlled trial comparing axillary dissection versus no axillary dissection in patients with sentinel node micrometastases 
The lancet oncology  2013;14(4):297-305.
Background
For breast cancer patients with a metastatic sentinel node (SN), axillary dissection (AD) has been standard treatment. However, for patients with minimal SN involvement, AD may be overtreatment. IBCSG Trial 23-01 was designed to determine whether no AD is non-inferior to AD in patients with one or more micrometastatic (≤2 mm) SNs and tumour ≤5 cm.
Methods
In this multicentre trial patients were randomised to AD or no AD. Eligibility was limited to patients with clinically-palpable axillary lymph node(s) and a primary tumour ≤ 5 cm who, after sentinel node biopsy, had one or more micrometastatic (≤ 2 mm) sentinel lymphs nodes with no extracapsular extension. The primary endpoint was disease-free survival (DFS). Non-inferiority was defined as a hazard ratio of <1·25 for no AD vs. AD. The analysis was intention to treat. Patients were randomly allocated in a 1:1 ratio to AD or no AD with stratification by centre and menopausal status. There was no attempt to blind the treatment assignment. The trial is registered with ClinicalTrials.gov, NCT00072293. Per protocol, disease and survival information continues to be collected yearly.
Findings
From 2001 to 2010, 934 patients were randomised; 931 were evaluable (464 in the AD group and 467 in the no AD group). After a median follow-up of 5·0 (IQR 3.6–7.3) years, there were 124 DFS events, including breast-cancer-related events in 95 patients (local, 18; contralateral breast, 12; regional, 6; and distant, 59), and other events in 29 (second malignancy, 26; death without prior cancer event, 3). Five-year DFS was 87·8% (95% CI 84·4%–91·2%) in the no AD group and 84·4% (95% CI 80·7%–88·1%) in the AD group (log-rank p=0·16) (HR no AD vs. AD=0·78, 95% CI 0·55–1·11, non-inferiority p=0·0042). Patients with reported long-term surgical events (grade 3–4) included 1 sensory neuropathy (grade 3), 3 lymphedema (2 grade 3 and 1 grade 4), and 3 motor neuropathy (grade 3), all in the AD group, and 1 grade 3 motor neuropathy in the no AD group. One serious adverse event was reported, a post-operative infection in the axilla in the AD group.
Interpretation
AD in patients with early breast cancer represented in this study (most had tumours < 3 cm (92%; 856/931), received breast conserving surgery (91%; 845/931) and adjuvant systemic therapy (96%; 892/931)) should be avoided when the SN is minimally involved, thus eliminating complications of axillary surgery with no adverse effect on survival.
Funding
Supported in part: local participating centres, IBCSG central funds, CA075362 from the U.S. National Cancer Institute, and Swiss Cancer League/Cancer Research- Switzerland/Oncosuisse (ICPOCS 01688-03-2005). No pharmaceutical company funds were used.
doi:10.1016/S1470-2045(13)70035-4
PMCID: PMC3935346  PMID: 23491275
breast cancer; sentinel node; axillary node; micrometastasis; sentinel node biopsy; axillary dissection; lymph node
4.  Safety and Activity of PD1 Blockade by Pidilizumab in Combination with Rituximab in Patients with Relapsed Follicular Lymphoma: a Single Group, Open-label, Phase 2 Trial 
The lancet oncology  2013;15(1):69-77.
Background
Endogenous or iatrogenic antitumor immune responses can improve the course of follicular lymphoma (FL), but may be diminished by immune checkpoints in the tumor microenvironment. These may include effects of programmed death (PD)-1, a co-inhibitory receptor that impairs T-cell function and is highly expressed on intratumoral T cells. In a Phase II trial, we determined the activity of pidilizumab, a humanized anti-PD-1 monoclonal antibody, with rituximab in patients with relapsed FL.
Methods
FL patients with rituximab-sensitive disease relapsing after 1–4 prior therapies were eligible. Pidilizumab was administered at 3 mg/kg every 4 weeks for 4 infusions, plus 8 optional infusions every 4 weeks for patients with stable disease or better. Starting 2 weeks after the first infusion of pidilizumab, rituximab was given at 375 mg/m2 weekly for 4 weeks. The primary endpoint was to assess the overall response rate. Analysis was by intention to treat. Peripheral blood and tumor biopsies were studied to assess immunological effects of pidilizumab. This trial has been completed and was registered at www.clinicaltrials.gov as NCT00904722.
Findings
The combination was well-tolerated, with no autoimmune or therapy-related grade 3/4 toxicities. The most common grade 1 adverse events were anemia (14 patients) and fatigue (13 patients), and the most common grade 2 adverse event was respiratory infection (5 patients). Overall 19/29 (66%) and complete 15/29 (52%) response rates in 29 evaluable patients were high, with tumor regression in 25/29 (86%) of patients. Median progression-free survival was 18.8 months (95% CI: 14.7 months to not reached). The median response duration for the 19 responders was 20.2 months (95% CI: 13.9 months to not reached). Correlative studies of blood and tumor provided insights into predicting response and understanding mechanisms involved.
Interpretation
Pidilizumab with rituximab is well-tolerated and its activity compared favorably to historical retreatment with rituximab monotherapy in patients with relapsed FL. Our results establish that immune checkpoint blockade is worthy of further study in FL.
Funding
National Institutes of Health, Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, Cure Tech Ltd, and UT MD Anderson Cancer Center.
doi:10.1016/S1470-2045(13)70551-5
PMCID: PMC3922714  PMID: 24332512
5.  Targeting A Tumor Suppressor To Suppress Tumor Growth: News and Views on Protein Phosphatase 2A (PP2A) as a Target for Anti-cancer Therapy 
The lancet oncology  2013;14(6):e229-e238.
Protein phosphatase 2A (PP2A), one of the major serine-threonine phosphatases in mammalian cells, maintains cell homeostasis by counteracting most of the kinase-driven intracellular signaling pathways. Unrestrained activation of oncogenic kinases together with inhibition of tumor suppressors is frequently required for the development of cancer. Because it has been found genetically altered or functionally inactivated in many solid cancers and leukemias, PP2A is indeed a bona fide tumor suppressor. For example, the phosphatase activity of PP2A is suppressed in chronic myelogenous leukemia and other malignancies characterized by the aberrant activity of oncogenic kinases. Notably, preclinical studies indicate that pharmacologic restoration of PP2A tumor suppressor activity by PP2A activating drugs (PADs, e.g. FTY720) effectively antagonizes cancer development and progression. Herein, we systematically discuss the importance of PP2A as a druggable tumor suppressor in light of the possible introduction of PADs into anti-cancer therapeutic protocols.
doi:10.1016/S1470-2045(12)70558-2
PMCID: PMC3913484  PMID: 23639323
6.  A Phase Ii Trial Of Selumetinib (Azd6244) In Women With Recurrent Low-Grade Serous Carcinoma Of The Ovary Or Peritoneum: A Gynecologic Oncology Group Trial 
The lancet oncology  2013;14(2):134-140.
BACKGROUND
Because low grade serous carcinoma of the ovary is relatively chemo resistant disease, this study evaluated Selumetinib (AZD6244), an inhibitor of mitogen-activated protein kinase kinase (MEK-1/2), and explored associations between RAS, and RAF family mutations with clinical outcome.
METHODS
Women with recurrent low-grade serous ovarian or peritoneal carcinoma were eligible and received Selumetinib at 100 mg. orally b.i.d. until progression or toxicity were enrolled in Gynecologic Oncology protocol 239(NCT00551070). This trial has been completed and we are reporting the results. The primary endpoint of this trial was to examine tumor response rate to Selumetinib. The study used all-treated patients to determine response rate and overall survival.
FINDINGS
Fifty-two patients were enrolled over two years. Eight patients (15.4%) had complete (1) or partial (7) responses, and 34 (65%) had stable disease. There were no treatment-related deaths. There were three observed grade 4 toxicities and 46 grade 3 toxicities that occurred in more than one patient. Observed grade 4 toxicities were cardiac (1), pain (1), and pulmonary (1). Grade 3 toxicities that occurred included gastrointestinal (13), dermatologic (9), and metabolic (7).
CONCLUSIONS
Selumetinib is well tolerated, and is active in the treatment of recurrent low-grade serous carcinoma. In exploratory analyses, response to Selumetinib did not appear to be related to RAS/RAF mutational status. The 63% disease control is encouraging and worthy of further evaluation of MEK inhibitors in this population. This study was supported by National Cancer Institute grants to the Gynecologic Oncology Group.
doi:10.1016/S1470-2045(12)70572-7
PMCID: PMC3627419  PMID: 23261356
Selumetinib; cancer; serous; ovarian; low-grade
7.  TARGETING DEVELOPMENTAL PATHWAYS IN CHILDREN WITH CANCER: WHAT PRICE SUCCESS? 
The lancet oncology  2013;14(2):e70-e78.
Much of current cancer research is aimed at exploiting cancers’ molecular addictions with targeted therapeutics, with notable successes documented in clinical trials. By their nature, these agents have different side effect profiles than conventional chemotherapeutics. While very few targeted agents have attained regulatory approval for use in children, pediatric oncologists are gaining experience with these drugs, which may have unique effects, both short- and long-term, on the developing child, unrecognized in adults. This Review summarizes the rationale for targeted therapy, challenges in pediatric drug development, unique side effect profiles of targeted agents, limited data from children treated with targeted agents, as well as implications of the current knowledge and gaps thereof. The demonstrated and potential impacts of targeted therapies on normal tissue development and function are discussed. We conclude that future clinical trial design should include carefully considered assessment of developmental effects of targeted therapy, as well as informed supportive care recommendations.
doi:10.1016/S1470-2045(12)70530-2
PMCID: PMC3673778  PMID: 23369685
targeted therapy; oncogene addiction; non-oncogene addiction; children; pediatric oncology; adverse effects; side effects
8.  Intensifying Tumor Immunity through Combination Therapy 
The lancet oncology  2012;13(5):10.1016/S1470-2045(12)70051-7.
doi:10.1016/S1470-2045(12)70051-7
PMCID: PMC3886831  PMID: 22326921
9.  Conditional survival of patients with metastatic renal-cell carcinoma treated with VEGF-targeted therapy: a population-based study 
The lancet oncology  2012;13(9):10.1016/S1470-2045(12)70285-1.
Summary
Background
The advent of targeted therapies in the past 7 years has extended median survival for metastatic renal-cell carcinoma. This improvement in clinical outcome has created a need for new, more accurate prognostic measures. We assessed the use of conditional survival—a measure that accounts for elapsed time since treatment initiation—for prognostication in patients with metastatic renal-cell carcinoma treated with first-line VEGF-targeted therapies.
Methods
We obtained data for patients with metastatic renal-cell carcinoma who were treated with a first-line VEGF-targeted therapy between April 7, 2003, and Oct 12, 2010, from our large multi-institutional International mRCC Database Consortium (centres in Canada, the USA, Singapore, Denmark, and South Korea). All histologies, performance statuses, and prognostic risk groups were included. The primary outcome was 2-year conditional survival, defined as the probability of surviving an additional 2 years from a given timepoint since the start of targeted therapy. Secondary analyses included 1-year and 3-year conditional survival, along with stratification of patients by Heng prognostic risk criteria and Karnofsky performance score, and conditional survival based on length of time on therapy. We used the Kaplan-Meier method and a landmark analysis to calculate conditional survival.
Findings
In the 1673 patients analysed, median follow-up for alive patients was 20·1 months (IQR 9·0–34·4). We recorded an increase in the 2-year conditional survival probability from 44% (95% CI 41–47) at 0 months to 51% (46–55) at 18 months since beginning targeted therapy. When stratified by the Heng prognostic risk criteria defined at therapy initiation, 2-year conditional survival changed little in the favourable and intermediate groups, but in the poor-risk group, 2-year conditional survival improved from 11% (8–15) at 0 months to 33% (18–48) after 18 months. When conditioned on time on targeted therapy from 0 months to 18 months, 2-year conditional survival improved from 44% (41–47) to 68% (60–75) in the overall population and from 74% (68–79) to 90% (77–96) in the favourable group, 49% (45–53) to 57% (45–67) in the intermediate group, and 11% (8–15) to 73% (43–89) in the poor risk group.
Interpretation
Conditional survival is a clinically useful prediction measure that adjusts prognosis of patients with metastatic renal-cell carcinoma on the basis of survival since treatment initiation or therapy duration. Conditional survival might be especially relevant to adjust prognosis for poor-risk patients.
Funding
The Trust Family Fund for Kidney Cancer Research.
doi:10.1016/S1470-2045(12)70285-1
PMCID: PMC3856362  PMID: 22877847
10.  Taking the starch out of hereditary colorectal cancer 
The lancet oncology  2012;13(12):1179-1180.
doi:10.1016/S1470-2045(12)70501-6
PMCID: PMC3793258  PMID: 23140760
11.  Effect of T-cell-epitope matching at HLA-DPB1 in recipients of unrelated-donor haemopoietic-cell transplantation: a retrospective study 
The lancet oncology  2012;13(4):10.1016/S1470-2045(12)70004-9.
Summary
Background The risks after unrelated-donor haemopoietic-cell transplantation with matched HLA-A, HLA-B, HLA-C, HLA-DRB1, HLA-DQB1 alleles between donor and recipient (10/10 matched) can be decreased by selection of unrelated donors who also match for HLA-DPB1; however, such donors are difficult to find. Classification of HLA-DPB1 mismatches based on T-cell-epitope groups could identify mismatches that might be tolerated (permissive) and those that would increase risks (non-permissive) after transplantation. We did a retrospective study to compare outcomes between permissive and non-permissive HLA-DPB1 mismatches in unrelated-donor haemopoietic-cell transplantation.
Methods HLA and clinical data for unrelated-donor transplantations submitted to the International Histocompatibility Working Group in haemopoietic-cell transplantation were analysed retrospectively. HLA-DPB1 T-cell-epitope groups were assigned according to a functional algorithm based on alloreactive T-cell crossreactivity patterns. Recipients and unrelated donors matching status were classified as HLA-DPB1 match, non-permissive HLA-DPB1 mismatch (those with mismatched T-cell-epitope groups), or permissive HLA-DPB1 mismatch (those with matched T-cell-epitope groups). The clinical outcomes assessed were overall mortality, non-relapse mortality, relapse, and severe (grade 3–4) acute graft-versus-host disease (aGvHD).
Findings Of 8539 transplantations, 5428 (64%) were matched for ten of ten HLA alleles (HLA 10/10 matched) and 3111 (36%) for nine of ten alleles (HLA 9/10 matched). Of the group overall, 1719 (20%) were HLA-DPB1 matches, 2670 (31%) non-permissive HLA-DPB1 mismatches, and 4150 (49%) permissive HLA-DPB1 mismatches. In HLA 10/10-matched transplantations, non-permissive mismatches were associated with a significantly increased risk of overall mortality (hazard ratio [HR] 1·15, 95% CI 1·05–1·25; p=0·002), non-relapse mortality (1·28, 1·14–1·42; p<0·0001), and severe aGvHD (odds ratio [OR] 1·31, 95% CI 1·11–1·54; p=0·001), but not relapse (HR 0·89, 95% CI 0·77–1·02; p=0·10), compared with permissive mismatches. There were significant differences between permissive HLA-DPB1 mismatches and HLA-DPB1 matches in terms of non-relapse mortality (0·86, 0·75–0·98; p=0·03) and relapse (1·34, 1·17–1·54; p<0·0001), but not for overall mortality (0·96, 0·87–1·06; p=0·40) or aGvHD (OR 0·84, 95% CI 0·69–1·03; p=0·09). In the HLA 9/10 matched population, non-permissive HLA-DPB1 mismatches also increased the risk of overall mortality (HR 1·10, 95% CI 1·00–1·22; p=0·06), non-relapse mortality (1·19, 1·05–1·36; p=0·007), and severe aGvHD (OR 1·37, 95% CI 1·13–1·66; p=0·002) compared with permissive mismatches, but the risk of relapse was the same in both groups (HR 0·93, 95% CI 0·78–1·11; p=0·44). Outcomes for HLA 10/10-matched transplantations with non-permissive HLA-DPB1 mismatches did not differ substantially from those for HLA 9/10-matched transplantations with permissive HLA-DPB1 mismatches or HLA-DPB1 matches.
Interpretation T-cell-epitope matching defines permissive and non-permissive HLA-DPB1 mismatches. Avoidance of an unrelated donor with a non-permissive T-cell-epitope mismatch at HLA-DPB1 might provide a practical clinical strategy for lowering the risks of mortality after unrelated-donor haemopoietic-cell transplantation.
Funding National Institutes of Health; Associazione Italiana per la Ricerca sul Cancro; Telethon Foundation; Italian Ministry of Health; Cariplo Foundation; National Cancer Institute; National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute; National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases; Office of Naval Research; IRGHET Paris; Swedish Cancer Society; Children's Cancer Foundation; Swedish Research Council; Cancer Society in Stockholm; Karolinska Institutet; and Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.
doi:10.1016/S1470-2045(12)70004-9
PMCID: PMC3813000  PMID: 22340965
12.  Lynch syndrome: new tales from the crypt 
The lancet oncology  2012;13(6):562-564.
doi:10.1016/S1470-2045(12)70134-1
PMCID: PMC3805503  PMID: 22552010
13.  Effect of zoledronic acid on disseminated tumour cells in women with locally advanced breast cancer: an open label, randomised, phase 2 trial 
The lancet oncology  2010;11(5):421-428.
Summary
Background
Treatment with bisphosphonates decreases bone loss and can increase disease-free survival in patients with breast cancer. The aim of our study was to assess the effect of zoledronic acid on clearance of disseminated tumour cells (DTCs) from the bone marrow in women undergoing neoadjuvant chemotherapy for breast cancer.
Methods
Patients were recruited for this open-label, phase 2 randomised trial between March 17, 2003, and May 19, 2006, at a single centre. Eligible patients had clinical stage II–III (≥T2 and/or ≥N1) newly diagnosed breast cancer, Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group performance status of 0 or 1, and normal cardiac, renal, and liver function. 120 women were randomly assigned, using allocation concealment, to receive 4 mg zoledronic acid intravenously every 3 weeks (n=60), or no zoledronic acid (n=60), for 1 year concomitant with four cycles of neoadjuvant epirubicin (75 mg/m²) plus docetaxel (75 mg/m²) and two cycles of adjuvant epirubicin plus docetaxel. The primary endpoint was the number of patients with detectable DTCs at 3 months. Final analysis was done 1 year after the last patient was enrolled. Analyses were done for all patients with available data at 3 months. This study is registered with ClinicalTrials.gov, number NCT00242203.
Findings
Of the 120 patients initially enrolled, one withdrew after signing consent and one patient’s baseline bone marrow was not available. Both of these patients were in the control group. At 3 months, 109 bone-marrow samples were available for analysis. In the zoledronic acid group, bone marrow was not collected from one patient because of disease progression, one patient was taken off study because of severe diarrhoea, and two patients had not consented at the time of surgery. In the control group, bone marrow was not collected from two patients because of disease progression, one patient withdrew consent, and three patients were not consented at the time of surgery. At baseline, DTCs were detected in 26 of 60 patients in the zoledronic acid group and 28 of 58 patients in the control group. At 3 months, 17 of 56 patients receiving zoledronic acid versus 25 of 53 patients who did not receive zoledronic acid had detectable DTCs (p=0·054). The most common grade 3–4 toxicities were infection (five of 60 patients in the zoledronic acid group and six of 59 in the control group) and thrombosis (five of 60 in the zoledronic acid and two of 59 in the control group). There was one documented case of osteonecrosis in the zoledronic acid group.
Interpretation
Zoledronic acid administered with chemotherapy resulted in a decreased proportion of patients with DTCs detected in the bone marrow at the time of surgery. Our study supports the hypothesis that the antimetastatic effects of zoledronic acid may be through effects on DTCs.
Funding
Novartis Pharmaceuticals and Pfi zer Inc.
doi:10.1016/S1470-2045(10)70054-1
PMCID: PMC3792651  PMID: 20362507
14.  Prospective Analysis of Genetic Polymorphisms and Risk of Recurrence in Renal Cell Cancer 
The lancet oncology  2012;14(1):81-87.
Summary
Background
Germline genetic polymorphisms may affect the risk of recurrence in patients with localized renal cell carcinoma (RCC). Our aim was to investigate the association of genetic polymorphisms with RCC recurrence.
Patients and Methods
We analyzed germline DNA samples extracted from 554 (discovery cohort of 403 and an independent validation cohort of 151) patients with localized RCC treated at Dana-Farber/Harvard Cancer Center (DF/HCC) and of European-American ancestry (Caucasians). The discovery cohort was selected from a prospective database at Dana-Farber/Harvard Cancer Center and the validation cohort was identified from the Brigham and Women’s Hospital surgery and pathology department records. Single nucleotide polymorphims (SNPs) residing in 70 genes involved in RCC pathogenesis including the VHL/HIF/VEGF, PI3K/AKT/mTOR pathways, and genes involved in immune regulation and metabolism were genotyped for the discovery cohort (total 285 SNPs successfully genotyped and assessable for analysis). The analyses of genotype associations with recurrence free survival (RFS) were assessed using Cox proportional hazards model, Kaplan-Meier method and logrank test. False discovery rate (FDR) q-value was used to adjust for multiple comparisons in selecting potential SNPs with RFS association. The finding from the discovery cohort was validated in an external independent cohort.
Findings
We report the significant association between genotype variants of SNP rs11762213 (c.144G>A; p.Ala48Ala, located in exon two c-MET) and primary analysis endpoint of RFS using both univariate and multivariable analysis. Specifically, patients carrying one or two copies of the minor (risk) allele had an increased risk of recurrence or death (hazard ratio (HR) =1·86, 95% confidence interval (CI), 1·17,2·95; p=0·0084) in the multivariate analysis adjusted for clinical and pathological factors. The median RFS for carriers of the risk allele was 19 months (95%CI: 9,*) compared to 50 months (95%CI: 37,75) for homozygotes of the non-risk allele. The significant association was validated using data from the validation cohort with a HR of 2·45 (95%CI: 1·01,5·95; p=0·048), although of borderline significance. The rs11762213 results in a synonymous aminoacid change in cMET gene. * unable to estimate due to small sample.
Interpretation
Patients with localized RCC and c-MET polymorphism (rs11762213) may have an increased risk of recurrence after nephrectomy. If these results are further validated, it may be incorporated in future prognostic tools, potentially aiding in the design of adjuvant clinical trials with c-MET inhibitors, and clinical management.
Funding
This project is funded by the Conquer Cancer Foundation and ASCO under a Career Development Award (CDA) for Dr. Choueiri, The Trust Family Research for Kidney cancer for Dr. Choueiri and the NIH/NCI Kidney cancer SPORE.
doi:10.1016/S1470-2045(12)70517-X
PMCID: PMC3769687  PMID: 23219378
localized renal cell cancer; nephrectomy; recurrence free interval; genetic polymorphisms; single nucleotide polymorphisms; MET; VEGF
15.  Alternate-Week versus Continuous Dexamethasone Scheduling on the Risk of Osteonecrosis in Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia: Results from the CCG-1961 Randomized Cohort Trial 
The lancet oncology  2012;13(9):906-915.
SUMMARY
Background
Acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) is curable in over 80% of children and adolescents with high-risk features. However, current therapies are associated with symptomatic osteonecrosis that disproportionately affects adolescents, often requires surgery, and is one of the most common causes of short- and long-term morbidity. A strategy is needed to lessen this risk.
Methods
CCG-1961, a multi-cohort randomized cooperative group trial, evaluated components of therapeutic intensification in 2056 eligible, newly diagnosed high-risk patients (white blood cell count ≥50×109/L and/or age ≥10 years). To address osteonecrosis, a novel alternate-week dexamethasone schedule (10 mg/m2/day on days 0-6 and 14-20) was compared to standard continuous dexamethasone (10 mg/m2/day on days 0-20) in randomized regimens with either double or single delayed intensification phases, respectively. Randomization was done based on a randomization schedule generated using permuted blocks within strata. Patients were prospectively monitored clinically for osteonecrosis, with confirmatory imaging of suspected sites. Primary analyses were performed on an intent-to-treat basis and focused on the estimation and comparison of cumulative incidence rates of osteonecrosis both overall and in patient subgroups (age, gender, marrow early response status); final results are herein reported. This study is registered with ClinicalTrials.gov, number NCT00002812.
Findings
Symptomatic osteonecrosis was diagnosed in 143 patients at 377 confirmed skeletal sites, resulting in 139 surgeries. The overall cumulative incidence of osteonecrosis was 7·7% (N=2056) at 5 years, correlating with age at ALL diagnosis (1-9 years 1·0% (N=769), 10-15 years 9·9% (N=1025), ≥16 years 20·0% (N=262), p<0·0001) and gender (≥10 years, female 15·7% (N=525) versus male 9·3% (N=762), p=0·0010). For patients ≥10 years old with a rapid response to induction therapy, the use of alternate-week dexamethasone during delayed intensification phases significantly reduced osteonecrosis incidence compared with continuous dexamethasone (8·7±2·1% (N=420) versus 17·0±2·9% (N=403), p=0·0005), especially those ≥16 years (11·3±5·3% (N=84) versus 37·5±11·1% (N=79), p=0·0003; females 17·2±8·1% (N=32) versus 43·9±14·1% (N=23), p=0·050; males 7·7±5·9% (N=53) versus 34·6±11·6% (N=56), p=0·0014).
Interpretation
Alternate-week dexamethasone during delayed intensification phases effectively reduces osteonecrosis risk in children and adolescents receiving intensified therapy for high-risk ALL.
doi:10.1016/S1470-2045(12)70274-7
PMCID: PMC3448283  PMID: 22901620
16.  Assessment of dexrazoxane as a cardioprotectant in doxorubicin-treated children with high-risk acute lymphoblastic leukaemia: long-term follow-up of a prospective, randomised, multicentre trial 
The lancet oncology  2010;11(10):950-961.
Summary
Background
Doxorubicin chemotherapy is associated with cardiomyopathy. Dexrazoxane reduces cardiac damage during treatment with doxorubicin in children with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (ALL). We aimed to establish the long-term effect of dexrazoxane on the subclinical state of cardiac health in survivors of childhood high-risk ALL 5 years after completion of doxorubicin treatment.
Methods
Between January, 1996, and September, 2000, children with high-risk ALL were enrolled from nine centres in the USA, Canada, and Puerto Rico. Patients were assigned by block randomisation to receive ten doses of 30 mg/m² doxorubicin alone or the same dose of doxorubicin preceded by 300 mg/m² dexrazoxane. Treatment assignment was obtained through a telephone call to a centralised registrar to conceal allocation. Investigators were masked to treatment assignment but treating physicians and patients were not; however, investigators, physicians, and patients were masked to study serum cardiac troponin-T concentrations and echocardiographic measurements. The primary endpoints were late left ventricular structure and function abnormalities as assessed by echocardiography; analyses were done including all patients with data available after treatment completion. This trial has been completed and is registered with ClinicalTrials.gov, number NCT00165087.
Findings
100 children were assigned to doxorubicin (66 analysed) and 105 to doxorubicin plus dexrazoxane (68 analysed). 5 years after the completion of doxorubicin chemotherapy, mean left ventricular fractional shortening and end-systolic dimension Z scores were significantly worse than normal for children who received doxorubicin alone (left ventricular fractional shortening: −0·82, 95% CI −1·31 to −0·33; end-systolic dimension: 0·57, 0·21–0·93) but not for those who also received dexrazoxane (−0·41, −0·88 to 0·06; 0·15, −0·20 to 0·51). The protective effect of dexrazoxane, relative to doxorubicin alone, on left ventricular wall thickness (difference between groups: 0·47, 0·46–0·48) and thickness-to-dimension ratio (0·66, 0·64–0·68) were the only statistically significant characteristics at 5 years. Subgroup analysis showed dexrazoxane protection (p=0·04) for left ventricular fractional shortening at 5 years in girls (1·17, 0·24–2·11), but not in boys (−0·10, −0·87 to 0·68). Similarly, subgroup analysis showed dexrazoxane protection (p=0·046) for the left ventricular thickness-to-dimension ratio at 5 years in girls (1·15, 0·44–1·85), but not in boys (0·19, −0·42 to 0·81). With a median follow-up for recurrence and death of 8·7 years (range 1·3–12·1), event-free survival was 77% (95% CI 67–84) for children in the doxorubicin-alone group, and 76% (67–84) for children in the doxorubicin plus dexrazoxane group (p=0·99).
Interpretation
Dexrazoxane provides long-term cardioprotection without compromising oncological efficacy in doxorubicin-treated children with high-risk ALL. Dexrazoxane exerts greater long-term cardioprotective effects in girls than in boys.
Funding
US National Institutes of Health, Children’s Cardiomyopathy Foundation, University of Miami Women’s Cancer Association, Lance Armstrong Foundation, Roche Diagnostics, Pfizer, and Novartis.
doi:10.1016/S1470-2045(10)70204-7
PMCID: PMC3756093  PMID: 20850381
17.  Pharmacogenetic biomarkers for the prediction of response to antiangiogenic treatment 
The lancet oncology  2012;13(10):e427-e436.
Antiangiogenic treatments have shown activity across multiple tumour types and in various settings. Despite having been approved on the basis of efficacy, the therapeutic index varies substantially in different settings for many of these agents. A major limitation is the current inability to personalise treatment a priori according to findings on measurement of a predictive biomarker. The roles of germline single-nucleotide polymorphisms have been investigated as potential biomarkers for antiangiogenic treatments. The rationale is founded on the understanding that the drugs target the vasculature rather than the tumour, which could mean that much of the variability is regulated by the host. Several single-nucleotide polymorphisms have been associated with differential outcomes and toxic effects in clinical trials. In this Review we provide an overview of available data with particular attention paid to the pitfalls and strengths of potential biomarkers. We also highlight continuing work and plans for confirmatory studies.
doi:10.1016/S1470-2045(12)70275-9
PMCID: PMC3730288  PMID: 23026828
18.  Dose-dense cisplatin-based chemotherapy and surgery for children with high-risk hepatoblastoma (SIOPEL-4): a prospective, single-arm, feasibility study 
The Lancet Oncology  2013;14(9):834-842.
Summary
Background
The objective of this study was to establish the efficacy and safety of a new treatment regimen consisting of dose-dense cisplatin-based chemotherapy and radical surgery in children with high-risk hepatoblastoma.
Methods
SIOPEL-4 was a prospective single-arm feasibility study. Patients aged 18 years or younger with newly diagnosed hepatoblastoma with either metastatic disease, tumour in all liver segments, abdominal extrahepatic disease, major vascular invasion, low α fetoprotein, or tumour rupture were eligible. Treatment consisted of preoperative chemotherapy (cycles A1–A3: cisplatin 80 mg/m2 per day intravenous in 24 h on day 1; cisplatin 70 mg/m2 per day intravenous in 24 h on days 8, 15, 29, 36, 43, 57, and 64; and doxorubicin 30 mg/m2 per day intravenous in 24 h on days 8, 9, 36, 37, 57, and 58) followed by surgical removal of all remaining tumour lesions if feasible (including liver transplantation and metastasectomy, if needed). Patients whose tumour remained unresectable received additional preoperative chemotherapy (cycle B: doxorubicin 25 mg/m2 per day in 24 h on days 1–3 and 22–24, and carboplatin area under the curve [AUC] 10·6 mg/mL per min per day intravenous in 1 h on days 1 and 22) before surgery was attempted. After surgery, postoperative chemotherapy was given (cycle C: doxorubicin 20 mg/m2 per day in 24 h on days 1, 2, 22, 23, 43, and 44, and carboplatin AUC 6·6 mg/mL per min per day in 1 h on days 1, 22, and 43) to patients who did not receive cycle B. The primary endpoint was the proportion of patients with complete remission at the end of treatment. Analysis was by intention to treat. This trial is registered at ClinicalTrials.gov, NCT00077389.
Findings
We report the final analysis of the trial. 62 eligible patients (39 with lung metastases) were included and analysed. 60 (98%, 95% CI 91–100) of 61 evaluable patients (one child underwent primary hepatectomy) had a partial response to preoperative chemotherapy. Complete resection of all tumour lesions was achieved in 46 patients (74%). At the end of therapy, 49 (79%, 95% CI 67–88) of 62 patients were in complete remission. With a median follow-up of 52 months, 3-year event-free survival was 76% (95% CI 65–87) and 3-year overall survival was 83% (73–93). 60 (97%) patients had grade 3–4 haematological toxicity (anaemia, neutropenia, or thrombocytopenia) and 44 (71%) had at least one episode of febrile neutropenia. Other main grade 3 or 4 toxicities were documented infections (17 patients, 27%), anorexia (22, 35%), and mucositis (seven, 11%). One child died of fungal infection in neutropenia. Moderate-to-severe ototoxicity was documented in 31 (50%) patients. 18 serious adverse events (including two deaths) reflecting the observed side-effects were reported in the trial (the most common was ototoxicity in five patients).
Interpretation
The SIOPEL-4 treatment regimen is feasible and efficacious for complete remission at the end of treatment for patients with high-risk hepatoblastoma.
Funding
Cancer Research UK and Cancer Research Switzerland/Oncosuisse.
doi:10.1016/S1470-2045(13)70272-9
PMCID: PMC3730732  PMID: 23831416
19.  Safety and activity of crizotinib for paediatric patients with refractory solid tumours or anaplastic large-cell lymphoma: a Children’s Oncology Group phase 1 consortium study 
The lancet oncology  2013;14(6):472-480.
Summary
Background
Various human cancers have ALK gene translocations, amplifications, or oncogenic mutations, such as anaplastic large-cell lymphoma, inflammatory myofibroblastic tumours, non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC), and neuroblastoma. Therefore, ALK inhibition could be a useful therapeutic strategy in children. We aimed to determine the safety, recommended phase 2 dose, and antitumour activity of crizotinib in children with refractory solid tumours and anaplastic large-cell lymphoma.
Methods
In this open-label, phase 1 dose-escalation trial, patients older than 12 months and younger than 22 years with measurable or evaluable solid or CNS tumours, or anaplastic large-cell lymphoma, refractory to therapy and for whom there was no known curative treatment were eligible. Crizotinib was given twice daily without interruption. Six dose levels (100, 130, 165, 215, 280, 365 mg/m2 per dose) were assessed in the dose-finding phase of the study (part A1), which is now completed. The primary endpoint was to estimate the maximum tolerated dose, to define the toxic effects of crizotinib, and to characterise the pharmacokinetics of crizotinib in children with refractory cancer. Additionally, patients with confirmed ALK translocations, mutations, or amplification (part A2 of the study) or neuroblastoma (part A3) could enrol at one dose level lower than was currently given in part A1. We assessed ALK genomic status in tumour tissue and used quantitative RT-PCR to measure NPM-ALK fusion transcript in bone marrow and blood samples of patients with anaplastic large-cell lymphoma. All patients who received at least one dose of crizotinib were evaluable for response; patients completing at least one cycle of therapy or experiencing dose limiting toxicity before that were considered fully evaluable for toxicity. This study is registered with ClinicalTrials. gov, NCT00939770.
Findings
79 patients were enrolled in the study from Oct 2, 2009, to May 31, 2012. The median age was 10·1 years (range 1·1–21·4); 43 patients were included in the dose escalation phase (A1), 25 patients in part A2, and 11 patients in part A3. Crizotinib was well tolerated with a recommended phase 2 dose of 280 mg/m2 twice daily. Grade 4 adverse events in cycle 1 were neutropenia (two) and liver enzyme elevation (one). Grade 3 adverse events that occurred in more than one patient in cycle 1 were lymphopenia (two), and neutropenia (eight). The mean steady state peak concentration of crizotinib was 630 ng/mL and the time to reach this peak was 4 h (range 1–6). Objective tumour responses were documented in 14 of 79 patients (nine complete responses, five partial responses); and the anti-tumour activity was enriched in patients with known activating ALK aberrations (eight of nine with anaplastic large-cell lymphoma, one of 11 with neuroblastoma, three of seven with inflammatory myofibroblastic tumour, and one of two with NSCLC).
Interpretation
The findings suggest that a targeted inhibitor of ALK has antitumour activity in childhood malignancies harbouring ALK translocations, particularly anaplastic large-cell lymphoma and inflammatory myofibroblastic tumours, and that further investigation in the subset of neuroblastoma harbouring known ALK oncogenic mutations is warranted.
Funding
Pfizer and National Cancer Institute grant to the Children’s Oncology Group.
doi:10.1016/S1470-2045(13)70095-0
PMCID: PMC3730818  PMID: 23598171
20.  Panitumumab and irinotecan versus irinotecan alone for patients with KRAS wild-type, fluorouracil-resistant advanced colorectal cancer (PICCOLO): a prospectively stratified randomised trial 
The Lancet Oncology  2013;14(8):749-759.
Summary
Background
Therapeutic antibodies targeting EGFR have activity in advanced colorectal cancer, but results from clinical trials are inconsistent and the population in which most benefit is derived is uncertain. Our aim was to assess the addition of panitumumab to irinotecan in pretreated advanced colorectal cancer.
Methods
In this open-label, randomised trial, we enrolled patients who had advanced colorectal cancer progressing after fluoropyrimidine treatment with or without oxaliplatin from 60 centres in the UK. From December, 2006 until June, 2008, molecularly unselected patients were recruited to a three-arm design including irinotecan (control), irinotecan plus ciclosporin, and irinotecan plus panitumumab (IrPan) groups. From June 10, 2008, in response to new data, the trial was amended to a prospectively stratified design, restricting panitumumab randomisation to patients with KRAS wild-type tumours; the results of the comparison between the irinotcan and IrPan groups are reported here. We used a computer-generated randomisation sequence (stratified by previous EGFR targeted therapy and then minimised by centre, WHO performance status, previous oxaliplatin, previous bevacizumab, previous dose modifications, and best previous response) to randomly allocate patients to either irinotecan or IrPan. Patients in both groups received 350 mg/m2 intravenous irinotecan every 3 weeks (300 mg/m2 if aged ≥70 years or a performance status of 2); patients in the IrPan group also received intravenous panitumumab 9 mg/kg every 3 weeks. The primary endpoint was overall survival in KRAS wild-type patients who had not received previous EGFR targeted therapy, analysed by intention to treat. Tumour DNA was pyrosequenced for KRASc.146, BRAF, NRAS, and PIK3CA mutations, and predefined molecular subgroups were analysed for interaction with the effect of panitumumab. This study is registered, number ISRCTN93248876.
Results
Between Dec 4, 2006, and Aug 31, 2010, 1198 patients were enrolled, of whom 460 were included in the primary population of patients with KRASc.12–13,61 wild-type tumours and no previous EGFR targeted therapy. 230 patients were randomly allocated to irinotecan and 230 to IrPan. There was no difference in overall survival between groups (HR 1·01, 95% CI 0·83–1·23; p=0·91), but individuals in the IrPan group had longer progression-free survival (0·78, 0·64–0·95; p=0·015) and a greater number of responses (79 [34%] patients vs 27 [12%]; p<0·0001) than did individuals in the irinotecan group. Grade 3 or worse diarrhoea (64 [29%] of 219 patients vs 39 [18%] of 218 patients), skin toxicity (41 [19%] vs none), lethargy (45 [21]% vs 24 [11%]), infection (42 [19%] vs 22 [10%]) and haematological toxicity (48 [22%] vs 27 [12%]) were reported more commonly in the IrPan group than in the irinotecan group. We recorded five treatment-related deaths, two in the IrPan group and three in the irinotecan group.
Interpretation
Adding panitumumab to irinotecan did not improve the overall survival of patients with wild-type KRAS tumours. Further refinement of molecular selection is needed for substantial benefits to be derived from EGFR targeting agents.
Funding
Cancer Research UK, Amgen Inc.
doi:10.1016/S1470-2045(13)70163-3
PMCID: PMC3699713  PMID: 23725851
21.  HIGH COLORECTAL AND LOW ENDOMETRIAL CANCER RISK IN EPCAM DELETION-POSITIVE LYNCH SYNDROME: A COHORT STUDY 
The lancet oncology  2010;12(1):49-55.
Summary
BACKGROUND
Lynch syndrome is caused by germline mutations in mismatch repair genes (MSH2, MLH1, MSH6 or PMS2), which lead to a high risk of predominantly colorectal and endometrial cancer. Recently, we found that also constitutional 3′ end deletions of EPCAM can cause Lynch syndrome through epigenetic silencing of MSH2 in EPCAM expressing tissues. This results in a tissue specific MSH2-deficiency, which may evoke a different cancer risk and spectrum. To optimize the care for EPCAM deletion carriers we studied their cancer risk and spectrum.
METHODS
Clinical data of 194 carriers from 41 EPCAM families were systematically collected and compared to those of 431 carriers from 91 families with mutations in MLH1, MSH2, or MSH6.
FINDINGS
EPCAM deletion carriers exhibited a 75% [95%CI 65–85%] cumulative risk of colorectal cancer before the age of 70 years, with a mean age at diagnosis of 43 years, which is comparable to that of carriers of a combined EPCAM-MSH2 deletion (69% [95%CI 47-91%], p=0·8609) or of a mutation in MSH2 (77% [95%CI 64-90%], p=0·5892) or MLH1 (79% [95%CI 68-90%], p=0·5492) and higher than that of MSH6 mutation carriers (50% [95%CI 38-62%], p<0·0001). In contrast, women with EPCAM deletions (n=87) exhibited a 12% [95%CI 0-27%] cumulative risk of endometrial cancer, which is significantly lower than in carriers of a combined EPCAM-MSH2 deletion (55% [95%CI 20-90%], p<0·0001) or of a mutation in MSH2 (51% [95%CI 33-69%], p=0·0006) or MSH6 (34% [95%CI 20-48%], p=0·0309) and lower than in MLH1 (33% [95%CI 15-51%] p=0·1193) mutation carriers. This risk seems to be restricted to large deletions that extend close to the MSH2 gene promoter. Overall, a relatively high incidence of duodenal (n=3) and pancreatic (n=4) cancers was observed.
INTERPRETATION
EPCAM deletion carriers do have a high risk of colorectal cancer. Only those with deletions extending close to the MSH2 promoter have an increased risk of endometrial cancer. These results underscore the impact of mosaic MSH2-deficiency on cancer risk and are indicative for a protocol revision for surveillance and preventive surgery in EPCAM deletion carriers.
doi:10.1016/S1470-2045(10)70265-5
PMCID: PMC3670774  PMID: 21145788
Lynch syndrome; cancer risk; TACSTD1; EPCAM; MSH2; genotype-phenotype correlation
22.  Epirubicin, oxaliplatin, and capecitabine with or without panitumumab for patients with previously untreated advanced oesophagogastric cancer (REAL3): a randomised, open-label phase 3 trial 
The Lancet Oncology  2013;14(6):481-489.
Summary
Background
EGFR overexpression occurs in 27–55% of oesophagogastric adenocarcinomas, and correlates with poor prognosis. We aimed to assess addition of the anti-EGFR antibody panitumumab to epirubicin, oxaliplatin, and capecitabine (EOC) in patients with advanced oesophagogastric adenocarcinoma.
Methods
In this randomised, open-label phase 3 trial (REAL3), we enrolled patients with untreated, metastatic, or locally advanced oesophagogastric adenocarcinoma at 63 centres (tertiary referral centres, teaching hospitals, and district general hospitals) in the UK. Eligible patients were randomly allocated (1:1) to receive up to eight 21-day cycles of open-label EOC (epirubicin 50 mg/m2 and oxaliplatin 130 mg/m2 on day 1 and capecitabine 1250 mg/m2 per day on days 1–21) or modified-dose EOC plus panitumumab (mEOC+P; epirubicin 50 mg/m2 and oxaliplatin 100 mg/m2 on day 1, capecitabine 1000 mg/m2 per day on days 1–21, and panitumumab 9 mg/kg on day 1). Randomisation was blocked and stratified for centre region, extent of disease, and performance status. The primary endpoint was overall survival in the intention-to-treat population. We assessed safety in all patients who received at least one dose of study drug. After a preplanned independent data monitoring committee review in October, 2011, trial recruitment was halted and panitumumab withdrawn. Data for patients on treatment were censored at this timepoint. This study is registered with ClinicalTrials.gov, number NCT00824785.
Findings
Between June 2, 2008, and Oct 17, 2011, we enrolled 553 eligible patients. Median overall survival in 275 patients allocated EOC was 11·3 months (95% CI 9·6–13·0) compared with 8·8 months (7·7–9·8) in 278 patients allocated mEOC+P (hazard ratio [HR] 1·37, 95% CI 1·07–1·76; p=0·013). mEOC+P was associated with increased incidence of grade 3–4 diarrhoea (48 [17%] of 276 patients allocated mEOC+P vs 29 [11%] of 266 patients allocated EOC), rash (29 [11%] vs two [1%]), mucositis (14 [5%] vs none), and hypomagnesaemia (13 [5%] vs none) but reduced incidence of haematological toxicity (grade ≥3 neutropenia 35 [13%] vs 74 [28%]).
Interpretation
Addition of panitumumab to EOC chemotherapy does not increase overall survival and cannot be recommended for use in an unselected population with advanced oesophagogastric adenocarcinoma.
Funding
Amgen, UK National Institute for Health Research Biomedical Research Centre.
doi:10.1016/S1470-2045(13)70096-2
PMCID: PMC3669518  PMID: 23594787
23.  Surrogate endpoints for overall survival in chemotherapy and radiotherapy trials in operable and locally advanced lung cancer: a re-analysis of meta-analyses of individual patients' data 
The Lancet Oncology  2013;14(7):619-626.
Summary
Background
The gold standard endpoint in clinical trials of chemotherapy and radiotherapy for lung cancer is overall survival. Although reliable and simple to measure, this endpoint takes years to observe. Surrogate endpoints that would enable earlier assessments of treatment effects would be useful. We assessed the correlations between potential surrogate endpoints and overall survival at individual and trial levels.
Methods
We analysed individual patients' data from 15 071 patients involved in 60 randomised clinical trials that were assessed in six meta-analyses. Two meta-analyses were of adjuvant chemotherapy in non-small-cell lung cancer, three were of sequential or concurrent chemotherapy, and one was of modified radiotherapy in locally advanced lung cancer. We investigated disease-free survival (DFS) or progression-free survival (PFS), defined as the time from randomisation to local or distant relapse or death, and locoregional control, defined as the time to the first local event, as potential surrogate endpoints. At the individual level we calculated the squared correlations between distributions of these three endpoints and overall survival, and at the trial level we calculated the squared correlation between treatment effects for endpoints.
Findings
In trials of adjuvant chemotherapy, correlations between DFS and overall survival were very good at the individual level (ρ2=0·83, 95% CI 0·83–0·83 in trials without radiotherapy, and 0·87, 0·87–0·87 in trials with radiotherapy) and excellent at trial level (R2=0·92, 95% CI 0·88–0·95 in trials without radiotherapy and 0·99, 0·98–1·00 in trials with radiotherapy). In studies of locally advanced disease, correlations between PFS and overall survival were very good at the individual level (ρ2 range 0·77–0·85, dependent on the regimen being assessed) and trial level (R2 range 0·89–0·97). In studies with data on locoregional control, individual-level correlations were good (ρ2=0·71, 95% CI 0·71–0·71 for concurrent chemotherapy and ρ2=0·61, 0·61–0·61 for modified vs standard radiotherapy) and trial-level correlations very good (R2=0·85, 95% CI 0·77–0·92 for concurrent chemotherapy and R2=0·95, 0·91–0·98 for modified vs standard radiotherapy).
Interpretation
We found a high level of evidence that DFS is a valid surrogate endpoint for overall survival in studies of adjuvant chemotherapy involving patients with non-small-cell lung cancers, and PFS in those of chemotherapy and radiotherapy for patients with locally advanced lung cancers. Extrapolation to targeted agents, however, is not automatically warranted.
Funding
Programme Hospitalier de Recherche Clinique, Ligue Nationale Contre le Cancer, British Medical Research Council, Sanofi-Aventis.
doi:10.1016/S1470-2045(13)70158-X
PMCID: PMC3732017  PMID: 23680111
24.  Correction to Lancet Oncol 2013; 14: 481 
The Lancet Oncology  2013;14(7):e254.
doi:10.1016/S1470-2045(13)70263-8
PMCID: PMC3861687
25.  Conjugated Equine Oestrogen and Breast Cancer Incidence and Mortality in Postmenopausal Women with Hysterectomy: Extended Follow-up of the Women’s Health Initiative Randomised Trial 
The lancet oncology  2012;13(5):476-486.
Background
In contrast to many observational studies, women in the Women’s Health Initiative (WHI) trial randomised to oestrogen-alone had lower invasive breast cancer incidence than those assigned placebo. Influence of oestrogen use on breast cancer mortality has not been reported.
Methods
Between 1993 and 1998, the WHI enrolled 10,739 postmenopausal women from 40 US centres into a randomized, double-masked, placebo-controlled trial evaluating oral conjugated equine oestrogen (0·625 mg/d). Women aged 50–79 years with prior hysterectomy, anticipated 3-year survival, and mammography clearance were randomized by a computerized, permuted block algorithm, stratified by age group and centre, to receive oestrogen or matching placebo. The trial was terminated early, in 2004, for an adverse effect on stroke. In extended follow-up through August 2009, we assessed long-term effects of oestrogen use on invasive breast cancer incidence, tumor characteristics, and mortality. Cox regression models were used to estimate intention-to-treat hazard ratios [HRs].
Findings
After a median 11.8 (interquartile range [IQR], 9·1 to 12·9) years of follow-up, conjugated equine oestrogen-alone use for a median of 5·9 (IQR, 2·5 to 7·3) years was associated with lower invasive breast cancer incidence compared to placebo (151 vs. 199 breast cancers; annualized rates, 0·27% vs. 0·35%; HR, 0·77; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0·62 to 0·95; P=0·02) with no difference (P=0·76) between intervention-phase (HR, 0·79; 95% CI, 0·61 to 1·02) and post-intervention effects (HR, 0·75; 95% CI: 0·51 to 1·09) ). Potential effect modification by benign breast disease (P=0·01) and family history of breast cancer (P=0·02) was observed. In the oestrogen-alone group fewer women died from breast cancer (6 vs.16 deaths; annualized rates 0·009% vs. 0·024%; HR, 0·37; 95% CI, 0·13 to 0·91; P=0.03) and fewer died from all causes after a breast cancer diagnosis (30 vs. 50 deaths; annualized rates, 0·046% vs. 0·076%; HR, 0·62; 95% CI, 0·39 to 0·9;, P=0·04).
Interpretation
Women with hysterectomy seeking relief of climacteric symptoms may be given reassurance regarding breast cancer influence of oestrogen use consistent with durations observed in this trial. However, these findings do not support oestrogen use for breast cancer risk reduction since this benefit may not apply to populations at higher risk.
Funding
US National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute. Wyeth provided study medications.
doi:10.1016/S1470-2045(12)70075-X
PMCID: PMC3412626  PMID: 22401913
menopausal hormone therapy; breast neoplasms; breast cancer mortality; prevention trial

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