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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. Source

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. Source

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. Source

Von Minckwitz G.,C o GBG Forschungs GmbH | Untch M.,HELIOS Klinikum | Blohmer J.-U.,St. Gertrauden Krankenhaus | Costa S.D.,Universitats Frauenklinik | And 13 more authors.
Journal of Clinical Oncology | Year: 2012

Purpose: The exact definition of pathologic complete response (pCR) and its prognostic impact on survival in intrinsic breast cancer subtypes is uncertain. Methods: Tumor response at surgery and its association with long-term outcome of 6,377 patients with primary breast cancer receiving neoadjuvant anthracycline-taxane-based chemotherapy in seven randomized trials were analyzed. Results: Disease-free survival (DFS) was significantly superior in patients with no invasive and no in situ residuals in breast or nodes (n = 955) compared with patients with residual ductal carcinoma in situ only (n = 309), no invasive residuals in breast but involved nodes (n = 186), only focal-invasive disease in the breast (n = 478), and gross invasive residual disease (n = 4,449; P < .001). Hazard ratios for DFS comparing patients with or without pCR were lowest when defined as no invasive and no in situ residuals (0.446) and increased monotonously when in situ residuals (0.523), no invasive breast residuals but involved nodes (0.623), and focal-invasive disease (0.727) were included in the definition. pCR was associated with improved DFS in luminal B/human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2) -negative (P = .005), HER2-positive/nonluminal (P < .001), and triple-negative (P < .001) tumors but not in luminal A (P = .39) or luminal B/HER2-positive (P < .45) breast cancer. pCR in HER2-positive (nonluminal) and triple-negative tumors was associated with excellent prognosis. Conclusion: pCR defined as no invasive and no in situ residuals in breast and nodes can best discriminate between patients with favorable and unfavorable outcomes. Patients with noninvasive or focal-invasive residues or involved lymph nodes should not be considered as having achieved pCR. pCR is a suitable surrogate end point for patients with luminal B/HER2-negative, HER2-positive (nonluminal), and triple-negative disease but not for those with luminal B/HER2-positive or luminal A tumors. © 2012 by American Society of Clinical Oncology. Source

Von Minckwitz G.,C o GBG Forschungs GmbH | Untch M.,HELIOS Klinikum | Nuesch E.,University of Bern | Loibl S.,C o GBG Forschungs GmbH | And 19 more authors.
Breast Cancer Research and Treatment | Year: 2011

Pathological complete response (pCR) to neoadjuvant treatment correlates with outcome in breast cancer. We determined whether characteristics of neoadjuvant therapy are associated with pCR. We used multi-level models, which accounted for heterogeneity in pCR across trials and trial arms, to analyze individual patient data from 3332 women included in 7 German neoadjuvant trials with uniform protocols. PCR was associated with an increase in number of chemotherapy cycles (odds ratio [OR] 1.2 for every two additional cycles; P = 0.009), with higher cumulative anthracycline doses (OR 1.6; P = 0.002), higher cumulative taxane doses (OR 1.6; P = 0.009), and with capecitabine containing regimens (OR 1.62; P = 0.022). Association of pCR with increase in number of cycles appeared more pronounced in hormone receptor (HR)-positive tumors (OR 1.35) than in HR-negative tumors (OR 1.04; P for interaction = 0.046). Effect of anthracycline dose was particularly pronounced in HER2-negative tumors (OR 1.61), compared to HER2-positive tumors (OR 0.83; P for interaction = 0.14). Simultaneous trastuzumab treatment in HER2-positive tumors increased odds of pCR 3.2-fold (P < 0.001). No association of pCR and number of trastuzumab cycles was found (OR 1.20, P = 0.39). Dosing characteristics appear important for successful treatment of breast cancer. Longer treatment, higher cumulative doses of anthracyclines and taxanes, and the addition of capecitabine and trastuzumab are associated with better response. Tailoring according to breast cancer phenotype might be possible: longer treatment in HR-positive tumors, higher cumulative anthracycline doses for HER2-negative tumors, shorter treatment at higher cumulative doses for triple-negative tumors, and limited number of preoperative trastuzumab cycles in HER2-positive tumors. © 2010 Springer Science+Business Media, LLC. Source

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