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Hannover, Germany

Hanusch C.,Klinikum zum Roten Kreuz | Schneeweiss A.,University of Heidelberg | Loibl S.,German Breast Group | Untch M.,HELIOS Klinikum | And 14 more authors.
Clinical Cancer Research | Year: 2015

Purpose: Dual anti-HER2 blockade with trastuzumab/pertuzumab or trastuzumab/lapatinib in combination with anthracycline/taxane-based chemotherapy can reach pathologic complete response (pCR) rates of up to 60% in HER2-positive breast cancer. The DAFNE (Dual blockade with AFatinib and trastuzumab as NEoadjuvant treatment) phase II study (NCT015591477) investigated a dual blockade with the irreversible pan-HER inhibitor afatinib and trastuzumab in this setting. Experimental Design: Participants with untreated, centrally HER2-positive breast cancer were treated for 6 weeks with afatinib (20 mg/d) and trastuzumab [(8) 6 mg/kg/3 weeks] alone; followed by 12-week treatment with paclitaxel (80 mg/m2/1 week), trastuzumab, and afatinib; followed by 12 weeks with epirubicin (90 mg/m2/3 weeks), cyclophosphamide (600 mg/m2/3 weeks), and trastuzumab before surgery. Primary objective was pCR rate, defined as ypT0/is ypN0. We expected a pCR rate of 70%; 65 patients were needed to exclude a rate of ≤55%. Results: pCR rate was 49.2% [90% confidence interval (CI), 38.5-60.1] in 65 treated patients. Patients with hormone receptor-negative (N = 19) or hormone receptor-positive (N = 46) tumors showed pCR rates of 63.2% and 43.5%, respectively (P = 0.153). Patients with (N = 9) or without (N = 56) lymphocyte predominant breast cancer (LPBC) showed pCR rates of 100% and 41.1%, respectively (P < 0.001). PCR rate was not different in patients with or without PIK3CA tumor mutations (P = 0.363). Clinical responses were seen in 96.3% of 54 evaluable patients, and breast conserving surgery was possible in 59.4% of 62 assessable patients. Most frequent nonhematologic grade 3-4 toxicities were diarrhea (7.7%), increased creatinine (4.6%), and infection (4.6%). One patient developed symptomatic congestive heart failure. Conclusions: Neoadjuvant treatment with afatinib, trastuzumab, and chemotherapy showed acceptable tolerability, and a pCR rate comparable with that of other anti-HER2 doublets but below challenging expectations. © 2015 American Association for Cancer Research.


Untch M.,Klinik fur Gynakologie | Gerber B.,Universitatsfrauenklinik Rostock | Mobus V.,Frauenklinik Am Klinikum Frankfurt Hochst | Schneeweiss A.,Universitatsfrauenklinik Heidelberg | And 23 more authors.
Breast Care | Year: 2011

Every 2 years, the International Consensus Conference on the Treatment of Primary Breast Cancer takes place in St. Gallen. Given that the concept of the St. Gallen Consensus Conference mainly reflects an international opinion, it appears useful to adapt the results of the vote for everyday therapy in Germany. A German working group comprising 28 breast cancer experts, amongst whom there are 3 members of the international St. Gallen panel, has therefore commented on this year's St. Gallen Consensus Conference (2011) from the German viewpoint. The focus of interest of this year's St. Gallen Conference was tumour biology as the starting point for decisions regarding individual therapy. There was an intensive discussion in relation to the clinical relevance of predictive and prognostic factors and possible consequences for decisions regarding therapy. Therefore, questions concerning the indication for adjuvant chemotherapy focused especially on the significance of the molecular phenotype of the tumour. In addition, important points for discussion were also the value of complete axillary dissection and the use of accelerated complete breast irradiation. Copyright © 2011 S. Karger AG, Basel.


Von Minckwitz G.,German Breast Group | Von Minckwitz G.,Goethe University Frankfurt | Schneeweiss A.,University of Heidelberg | Loibl S.,German Breast Group | And 22 more authors.
The Lancet Oncology | Year: 2014

Background: Preclinical data suggest that triple-negative breast cancers are sensitive to interstrand crosslinking agents, and that synergy may exist for the combination of a taxane, trastuzumab, and a platinum salt for HER2-positive breast cancer. We therefore aimed to assess the efficacy of the addition of carboplatin to neoadjuvant therapy for triple-negative and HER2-positive breast cancer. Methods: Patients with previously untreated, non-metastatic, stage II-III, triple-negative breast cancer and HER2-positive breast cancer were enrolled. Patients were treated for 18 weeks with paclitaxel (80 mg/m2 once a week) and non-pegylated liposomal doxorubicin (20 mg/m2 once a week). Patients with triple-negative breast cancer received simultaneous bevacizumab (15 mg/kg intravenously every 3 weeks). Patients with HER2-positive disease received simultaneous trastuzumab (8 mg/kg initial dose with subsequent doses of 6 mg/kg intravenously every 3 weeks) and lapatinib (750 mg daily). Patients were randomly assigned in a 1:1 ratio with dynamic allocation and minimisation, stratified by biological subtype and Ki-67 level to receive, at the same time as the backbone regimens, either carboplatin (AUC 1·5 [2·0 for the first 329 patients] once a week) or no carboplatin. The primary endpoint the proportion of patients who achieved a pathological complete response (defined as ypT0 ypN0), analysed for all patients who started treatment; a p value of less than 0·2 was deemed significant for the primary endpoint. This trial is registered with ClinicalTrials.gov, number NCT01426880. Findings: 296 patients were randomly assigned to receive carboplatin and 299 to no additional carboplatin, of whom 295 and 293 started treatment, respectively. In this final analysis, 129 patients (43·7%, 95% CI 38·1-49·4) in the carboplatin group achieved a pathological complete response, compared with 108 patients (36·9%, 31·3-42·4) without carboplatin (odds ratio 1·33, 95% CI 0·96-1·85; p=0·107). Of the patients with triple-negative breast cancer, 84 (53·2%, 54·4-60·9) of 158 patients achieved a pathological complete response with carboplatin, compared with 58 (36·9%, 29·4-44·5) of 157 without (p=0·005). Of the patients with HER2-positive tumours, 45 (32·8%, 25·0-40·7) of 137 patients achieved a pathological complete response with carboplatin compared with 50 (36·8%, 28·7-44·9) of 136 without (p=0·581; test for interaction p=0·015). Haematological and non-haematological toxic effects that were significantly more common in the carboplatin group than in the no-carboplatin group included grade 3 or 4 neutropenia (192 [65%] vs 79 [27%]), grade 3 or 4 anaemia (45 [15%] vs one [<1%]), grade 3 or 4 thrombocytopenia (42 [14%] vs one [<1%]), and grade 3 or 4 diarrhoea (51 [17%] vs 32 [11%]); carboplatin was more often associated with dose discontinuations (141 [48%] with carboplatin and 114 [39%] without carboplatin; p=0·031). The frequency of grade 3 or 4 haematological events decreased from 82% (n=135) to 70% (n=92) and grade 3 or 4 non-haematological events from 78% (n=128) to 59% (n=77) in the carboplatin arm when the dose of carboplatin was reduced from AUC 2·0 to 1·5. Interpretation: The addition of neoadjuvant carboplatin to a regimen of a taxane, an anthracycline, and targeted therapy significantly increases the proportion of patients achieving a pathological complete response. This regimen seems to increase responses in patients with triple-negative breast cancer, but not in those with HER2-positive breast cancer. Funding: GlaxoSmithKline, Roche, and Teva. © 2014 Elsevier Ltd.


von Minckwitz G.,German Breast Group | von Minckwitz G.,University Hospital | Rezai M.,Breast Center | Fasching P.A.,University Hospital | And 15 more authors.
Annals of Oncology | Year: 2014

Background: The GeparQuattro study showed that adding capecitabine or prolonging the duration of anthracyclinetaxane-based neoadjuvant chemotherapy from 24 to 36 weeks did not increase pathological complete response (pCR) rates. Trastuzumab-treated patients with HER2-positive disease showed a higher pCR rate than patients with HER2-negative disease treated with chemotherapy alone. We here present disease-free (DFS) and overall survival (OS) analyses. Patients and methods: Patients (n = 1495) with cT ≥ 3 tumors, or negative hormone-receptor status, or positive hormone-receptor and clinically node-positive disease received four times epirubicin/cyclophosphamide and were thereafter randomly assigned to four times docetaxel (Taxotere), or four times docetaxel/capecitabine over 24 weeks, or four times docetaxel followed by capecitabine over 36 weeks. Patients with HER2-positive tumors received 1 year of trastuzumab, starting with the first chemotherapy cycle. Follow-up was available for a median of 5.4 years. Results: Outcome was not improved for patients receiving capecitabine (HR 0.92; P = 0.463 for DFS and HR 93; P = 0.618 for OS) as well as for patients receiving 36 weeks of chemotherapy (HR 0.97; P = 0.818 for DFS and HR 0.97; P = 0.825 for OS). Trastuzumab-treated patients with HER2-positive disease showed similar DFS (P = 0.305) but a significantly better adjusted OS (P = 0.040) when compared with patients with HER2-negative disease treated with chemotherapy alone. Recorded long-term cardiac toxicity was low. Conclusions: Long-term results, similar to the results of pCR, do not support the use of capecitabine in the neoadjuvant setting in addition to an anthracycline-taxane-based chemotherapy. However, the results support previous data showing a benefit of trastuzumab as predicted by higher pCR rates. Clinical trial number: NCT 00288002, www.clinicaltrials.gov. © The Author 2013. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the European Society for Medical Oncology.


Fontanella C.,German Breast Group | Fontanella C.,University of Udine | Lederer B.,German Breast Group | Gade S.,German Breast Group | And 18 more authors.
Breast Cancer Research and Treatment | Year: 2015

Obesity is associated with an increased risk of breast cancer (BC) and poorer outcome. We assessed the impact of body mass index (BMI) on pathological complete response (pCR), disease-free (DFS), and overall survival (OS), according to BC subtypes in patients with primary BC treated with neoadjuvant chemotherapy. 8,872 patients with primary BC from eight neoadjuvant trials were categorized according to BMI: underweight (<18.5 kg/m2), normal weight (18.5 to <25 kg/m2), overweight (25 to <30 kg/m2), obese (30 to <40 kg/m2), and very obese (≥40 kg/m2). BC subtypes were defined as luminal-like (ER/PgR-positive and HER2-negative), HER2/luminal (ER/PgR-positive and HER2-positive), HER2-like (ER/PgR-negative and HER2-positive), and triple-negative (TNBC; ER/PgR- and HER2-negative). pCR rate was higher in normal weight patients compared with all other BMI groups (P = 0.003). Mean DFS and OS were shorter in obese (87.3 months, P = 0.014 and 94.9 months, P = 0.001, respectively) and very obese (66.6 months, P < 0.001 and 75.3 months, P < 0.001, respectively) compared with normal weight patients (91.5 and 98.8 months, respectively) which was confirmed by subpopulation treatment effect pattern plot analyses and was consistent in luminal-like and TNBC. No interaction was observed between BMI and pCR. Normal weight patients experienced less non-hematological adverse events (P = 0.002) and were more likely to receive full taxane doses (P < 0.001) compared with all other BMI groups. In multivariable analysis, the dose of taxanes was predictive for pCR (P < 0.001). Higher BMI was associated with lower pCR and a detrimental impact on survival. Normal weight patients had the best compliance to chemotherapy and received the highest taxane doses, which seems to be related with treatment outcomes. © 2015, Springer Science+Business Media New York.

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