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1.  Patterns and risk factors for locoregional failures after mastectomy for breast cancer: an International Breast Cancer Study Group report 
Annals of Oncology  2012;23(11):2852-2858.
Rates and risk factors of local, axillary and supraclavicular recurrences can guide patient selection and target for postmastectomy radiotherapy (PMRT).
Patients and methods
Local, axillary and supraclavicular recurrences were evaluated in 8106 patients enrolled in 13 randomized trials. Patients received chemotherapy and/or endocrine therapy and mastectomy without radiotherapy. Median follow-up was 15.2 years.
Ten-year cumulative incidence for chest wall recurrence of >15% was seen in patients aged <40 years (16.1%), with ≥4 positive nodes (16.5%) or 0–7 uninvolved nodes (15.1%); for supraclavicular failures >10%: ≥4 positive nodes (10.2%); for axillary failures of >5%: aged <40 years (5.1%), unknown primary tumor size (5.2%), 0–7 uninvolved nodes (5.2%). In patients with 1–3 positive nodes, 10-year cumulative incidence for chest wall recurrence of >15% were age <40, peritumoral vessel invasion or 0–7 uninvolved nodes. Age, number of positive nodes and number of uninvolved nodes were significant parameters for each locoregional relapse site.
PMRT to the chest wall and supraclavicular fossa is supported in patients with ≥4 positive nodes. With 1–3 positive nodes, chest wall PMRT may be considered in patients aged <40 years, with 0–7 uninvolved nodes or with vascular invasion. The findings do not support PMRT to the dissected axilla.
PMCID: PMC3477880  PMID: 22776708
adjuvant treatment; breast cancer; locoregional recurrence; postmastectomy radiotherapy
2.  Long-term results of International Breast Cancer Study Group Trial VIII: adjuvant chemotherapy plus goserelin compared with either therapy alone for premenopausal patients with node-negative breast cancer 
Annals of Oncology  2011;22(10):2216-2226.
Background: The International Breast Cancer Study Group Trial VIII compared long-term efficacy of endocrine therapy (goserelin), chemotherapy [cyclophosphamide, methotrexate and fluorouracil (CMF)], and chemoendocrine therapy (CMF followed by goserelin) for pre/perimenopausal women with lymph-node-negative breast cancer.
Patients and methods: From 1990 to 1999, 1063 patients were randomized to receive (i) goserelin for 24 months (n = 346), (ii) six courses of ‘classical’ CMF (cyclophosphamide, methotrexate, 5-fluorouracil) chemotherapy (n = 360), or (iii) six courses of CMF plus 18 months goserelin (CMF→ goserelin; n = 357). Tumors were classified as estrogen receptor (ER) negative (19%), ER positive (80%), or ER unknown (1%); 19% of patients were younger than 40. Median follow-up was 12.1 years.
Results: For the ER-positive cohort, sequential therapy provided a statistically significant benefit in disease-free survival (DFS) (12-year DFS = 77%) compared with CMF alone (69%) and goserelin alone (68%) (P = 0.04 for each comparison), due largely to the effect in younger patients. Patients with ER-negative tumors whose treatment included CMF had similar DFS (12-year DFS CMF = 67%; 12-year DFS CMF→ goserelin = 69%) compared with goserelin alone (12-year DFS = 61%, P= NS).
Conclusions: For pre/perimenopausal women with lymph-node-negative ER-positive breast cancer, CMF followed by goserelin improved DFS in comparison with either modality alone. The improvement was the most pronounced in those aged below 40, suggesting an endocrine effect of prolonged CMF-induced amenorrhea.
PMCID: PMC3179412  PMID: 21325445
amenorrhea; breast cancer; chemotherapy; goserelin; hormonal therapy, node negative
3.  Differential efficacy of three cycles of CMF followed by tamoxifen in patients with ER-positive and ER-negative tumors: Long-term follow up on IBCSG Trial IX 
Annals of Oncology  2011;22(9):1981-1987.
Background: The benefit of adjuvant chemotherapy in postmenopausal patients with estrogen receptor (ER)-positive lymph node-negative breast cancer is being reassessed.
Patients and methods: After stratification by ER status, 1669 postmenopausal patients with operable lymph node-negative breast cancer were randomly assigned to three 28-day courses of ‘classical’ CMF (cyclophosphamide, methotrexate, 5-fluorouracil) chemotherapy followed by tamoxifen for 57 months (CMF→tamoxifen) or to tamoxifen alone for 5 years.
Results: ERs were positive in 81% of tumors. At a median follow-up of 13.1 years, patients with ER-positive breast cancers did not benefit from CMF [13-year disease-free survival (DFS) 64% CMF→tamoxifen, 66% tamoxifen; P = 0.99], whereas CMF substantially improved the prognosis of patients with ER-negative breast cancer (13-year DFS 73% versus 57%, P = 0.001). Similarly, breast cancer-free interval (BCFI) was identical in the ER-positive cohort but significantly improved by chemotherapy in the ER-negative cohort (13-year BCFI 80% versus 63%, P = 0.001). CMF had no influence on second nonbreast malignancies or deaths from other causes.
Conclusion: CMF is not beneficial in postmenopausal patients with node-negative ER-positive breast cancer but is highly effective within the ER-negative cohort. In the future, other markers of chemotherapy response may define a subset of patients with ER-positive tumors who may benefit from adjuvant chemotherapy.
PMCID: PMC3202167  PMID: 21282282
adjuvant chemotherapy; breast cancer; estrogen receptor; postmenopause; tamoxifen
4.  Adverse prognostic value of peritumoral vascular invasion: is it abrogated by adequate endocrine adjuvant therapy? Results from two International Breast Cancer Study Group randomized trials of chemoendocrine adjuvant therapy for early breast cancer 
Annals of Oncology  2009;21(2):245-254.
Background: Peritumoral vascular invasion (PVI) may assist in assigning optimal adjuvant systemic therapy for women with early breast cancer.
Patients and methods: Patients participated in two International Breast Cancer Study Group randomized trials testing chemoendocrine adjuvant therapies in premenopausal (trial VIII) or postmenopausal (trial IX) node-negative breast cancer. PVI was assessed by institutional pathologists and/or central review on hematoxylin–eosin-stained slides in 99% of patients (analysis cohort 2754 patients, median follow-up >9 years).
Results: PVI, present in 23% of the tumors, was associated with higher grade tumors and larger tumor size (trial IX only). Presence of PVI increased locoregional and distant recurrence and was significantly associated with poorer disease-free survival. The adverse prognostic impact of PVI in trial VIII was limited to premenopausal patients with endocrine-responsive tumors randomized to therapies not containing goserelin, and conversely the beneficial effect of goserelin was limited to patients whose tumors showed PVI. In trial IX, all patients received tamoxifen: the adverse prognostic impact of PVI was limited to patients with receptor-negative tumors regardless of chemotherapy.
Conclusion: Adequate endocrine adjuvant therapy appears to abrogate the adverse impact of PVI in node-negative disease, while PVI may identify patients who will benefit particularly from adjuvant therapy.
PMCID: PMC2813305  PMID: 19633051
adjuvant therapy; breast cancer; endocrine responsiveness; metastasis; prognosis; vascular invasion
5.  Extracapsular tumor spread and the risk of local, axillary and supraclavicular recurrence in node-positive, premenopausal patients with breast cancer 
Annals of Oncology  2008;19(8):1393-1401.
Background: Extracapsular tumor spread (ECS) has been identified as a possible risk factor for breast cancer recurrence, but controversy exists regarding its role in decision making for regional radiotherapy. This study evaluates ECS as a predictor of local, axillary, and supraclavicular recurrence.
Patients and methods: International Breast Cancer Study Group Trial VI accrued 1475 eligible pre- and perimenopausal women with node-positive breast cancer who were randomly assigned to receive three to nine courses of classical combination chemotherapy with cyclophosphamide, methotrexate, and fluorouracil. ECS status was determined retrospectively in 933 patients based on review of pathology reports. Cumulative incidence and hazard ratios (HRs) were estimated using methods for competing risks analysis. Adjustment factors included treatment group and baseline patient and tumor characteristics. The median follow-up was 14 years.
Results: In univariable analysis, ECS was significantly associated with supraclavicular recurrence (HR = 1.96; 95% confidence interval 1.23–3.13; P = 0.005). HRs for local and axillary recurrence were 1.38 (P = 0.06) and 1.81 (P = 0.11), respectively. Following adjustment for number of lymph node metastases and other baseline prognostic factors, ECS was not significantly associated with any of the three recurrence types studied.
Conclusions: Our results indicate that the decision for additional regional radiotherapy should not be based solely on the presence of ECS.
PMCID: PMC2733063  PMID: 18385202
axillary recurrence;  breast cancer; extracapsular spread; extranodal invasion; loco-regional relapse

Results 1-5 (5)