Oliver Young

Western General Hospital, Edinburgh, Scotland, United Kingdom

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Publications (21)101.81 Total impact

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Introduction The use of acellular dermal matrix (ADM) has transformed the technique of implant-based breast reconstruction. It offers the option of a one-stage procedure and is felt to have benefits in cosmetic outcome but the medium and long-term outcomes are unknown. Methods All cases where ADM was used in a breast reconstructive procedure in the Edinburgh Breast Unit from its initial use on 7/7/2008 to 31/7/2012 were reviewed retrospectively. Follow up was completed to 30/11/2012. Results 147 patients received 232 sheets of ADM (156 Strattice, 73 Permacol and 3 Alloderm). Mean follow up was 687 days. In 40 cases unplanned implant explantation occured (17.2% or 27.2% of patients). 7 of 27 (25.9%) patients requiring adjuvant therapy had this delayed due to problems with the reconstruction. 30 of 80 patients (37.5%) undergoing unilateral surgery have undergone contralateral surgery. Implant loss varied significantly with smoking (34.6% loss rate in smokers vs 13.2% in non-smokers, p=0.001), with radiotherapy (28.1% loss rate vs 13.8% with no radiotherapy, p=0.001) and with incision type. There was no statistically significant variation by operating surgeon, type of ADM used, chemotherapy use, patient weight, breast weight or nipple preservation. Patients underwent a mean of 1.54 further operations (range 0-7). Conclusions While offering potential cosmetic and financial benefits, the use of ADM with implant-based reconstructions has a significant rate of implant loss, further surgery and potential delay in adjuvant therapy. These must be considered when planning treatment and consenting patients.
    European Journal of Surgical Oncology 09/2014; · 2.89 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Previous studies have demonstrated that both anastrozole and letrozole are well tolerated. Letrozole suppresses estrogen to a greater degree than anastrozole in the serum and breast tumor. Concerns have been raised that greater potency may adversely affect patients' quality of life (QOL). One hundred eighty-one postmenopausal women with invasive estrogen receptor-positive breast cancers were randomized to receive either 12 weeks of letrozole followed by 12 weeks of anastrozole or the reverse sequence. One hundred and six received immediate adjuvant aromatase inhibitors (AIs) following surgery, and 75 received extended adjuvant therapy. The Functional Assessment of Cancer Therapy Endocrine Subscale (FACT-B-ES) QOL questionnaires were completed to assess QOL on each drug. Additional side-effect profiles were collected. Each patient completed a patient preference form. Twenty-one patients withdrew before study end, 10/179 (5.6%) while taking letrozole and 4/173 (2.3%) while taking anastrozole (P = 0.12). Tamoxifen-naïve patients had a higher mean ES (endocrine symptoms subscale) score at entry versus those having extended therapy (66.0 vs. 61.9; P = 0.001). There was no significant change in FACT-B-ES (overall) scores or ES scores while patients were taking anastrozole or letrozole and no significant differences between drugs. Nearly 80% of patients reported one or more side effects with either agent. No differences in frequency, grade, or range of side effects were seen between drugs. Of 160 patients, 49 (30.6%) preferred letrozole, 57 (35.6%) preferred anastrozole, and 54 (33.8%) had no preference (P = 0.26, Pearson's Chi-squared test). In conclusion, both AIs are equally well tolerated. There were no significant differences in QOL scores between the two drugs.
    Breast Cancer Research and Treatment 02/2011; 125(3):741-9. · 4.47 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: mTOR plays a key role in tumor cell cycle control, proliferation, and survival. RAD001 (everolimus) is a novel macrolide that inhibits mTOR and thus downstream signaling pathways. 31 post-menopausal women with early breast cancer were given 5 mg RAD001 once daily for 14 days prior to surgery. Biopsies were taken at diagnosis and at surgery (post 14 days of treatment) and assessed for immunohistochemical changes in proliferation (Ki67), apoptosis (active caspase-3), p-AKT (s473), p-S6 (s235/236 and s240/244), p-mTOR (s2448), ER, and PR. Five patients did not complete the 2-week treatment period due to adverse events. All adverse events were grade 1 or 2 (NCIC-CTC scale). RAD001 treatment significantly decreased proliferation (geometric mean reduction 74% from baseline (p = 0.019)), particularly in HER-2 positive tumors. High Ki67 pre-treatment correlated with reduction in Ki67, an increase in apoptosis, a reduction in p-AKT (cytoplasmic) and reduction in p-mTOR following treatment. Nuclear expression of p-AKT was significantly reduced with treatment. Tumors that had a reduction in Ki67 with treatment exhibited a significant reduction in cytoplasmic p-AKT. p-S6 staining was significantly reduced independently of Ki67 (p < 0.001 for two sites of phosphorylation). RAD001 5 mg/daily is safe and tolerable in postmenopausal early breast cancer patients and inhibits the mTOR pathway and its downstream effectors, significantly reducing tumor cell proliferation. Tumors with high Ki67, high p-AKT, and HER-2 positivity may be more responsive to mTOR inhibition with RAD001. This is the first study to report results of RAD001 5 mg as a single agent in early breast cancer.
    Breast Cancer Research and Treatment 10/2010; 128(3):725-34. · 4.47 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Tamoxifen reduces risk of recurrence after breast conservation surgery for ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS), but no data exists on the effectiveness of aromatase inhibitors for DCIS. Cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) is overexpressed in DCIS, representing another potential therapeutic target. The aim of the study was to determine the effect of aromatase and/or COX-2 inhibition on epithelial proliferation and apoptosis in a presurgical study of estrogen receptor (ER)-positive DCIS. Methods: Postmenopausal women with ER-positive DCIS diagnosed by core biopsy were randomized to a 2 x 2 design of either 14 days of exemestane or placebo and celecoxib, or placebo immediately before surgery. Paired baseline and end point biopsies were analyzed for proliferation (Ki67), apoptosis, human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2), COX-2, and progesterone receptor (PR) expression by immunohistochemistry. The primary end point was a decrease in Ki67 between diagnosis and surgical excision. Ninety women were randomized: all were ER positive, 49 (54%) had grade III tumors, and 29 (32%) were HER2 positive (3+). Exemestane reduced proliferation compared with placebo with a median reduction of 9% (95% confidence interval, 6-14; P < 0.001). Progesterone receptor was reduced by exemestane (mean decrease, 19%; 95% confidence interval, 9-28; P = 0.011). The effect of exemestane on proliferation was seen regardless of grade, HER2, or PR expression. Celecoxib had no effect on proliferation or apoptosis alone, or in combination with exemestane. Exemestane reduces proliferation in ER-positive DCIS. Aromatase inhibition is a potential alternative to tamoxifen in patients who have undergone breast conservation for ER-positive DCIS.
    Clinical Cancer Research 02/2010; 16(5):1605-12. · 8.19 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: ALIQUOT (Anastrozole vs. Letrozole, an Investigation of Quality Of Life and Tolerability) was a prospective, open-label, randomized pharmacodynamic study designed to assess the effects of aromatase inhibitors (AIs) on bone turnover in healthy postmenopausal women with estrogen receptor-positive breast cancer. Ninety-four patients were randomized to receive either 12 weeks of letrozole (2.5 mg; n = 42) followed by 12 weeks of anastrozole (1 mg), or 12 weeks of anastrozole (1 mg; n = 42) followed by 12 weeks of letrozole (2.5 mg). After completion of the study period, patients in the immediate adjuvant group were either switched to tamoxifen (n = 38) or continued on anastrozole or letrozole. In the beginning of the study, 42 patients had taken tamoxifen within 3 months. Patients taking drugs likely to affect bone metabolism, including bisphosphonates, were excluded. Eighty-four patients had complete sample measurements and were included in the analysis. Prior tamoxifen therapy resulted in a significantly lower mean baseline procollagen type 1 N-terminal propeptide (PINP) compared with patients with no prior tamoxifen. There were no significant differences in bone markers between AIs at any time. By 6 months, significant increases were seen in PINP, C-terminal telopeptides (CTX), bone specific alkaline phosphatise (ALP), and urinary N-terminal telopeptides (NTX). Patients with prior tamoxifen had significantly greater increases than patients with no prior tamoxifen. Patients treated with 3 months of tamoxifen following 6 months of an AI showed a significant decrease in markers of bone resorption, serum CTX and urinary NTX. In conclusion, AI-induced bone turnover increases over time. Anastrozole and letrozole produce similar effects on bone metabolism and turnover. Stopping tamoxifen therapy and starting AIs results in a significantly greater increase in bone turnover compared with commencing AIs in tamoxifen-naïve patients. Patients given tamoxifen following AI therapy showed a decrease in markers of bone resorption.
    Breast Cancer Research and Treatment 11/2009; 119(3):643-51. · 4.47 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Early clinical trials of anticancer agents may be enriched by robust biomarkers of activity. Surrogate measures used in trials of cytotoxic agents, such as tumor size regression, may not be informative when investigating targeted agents that act principally to inhibit invasion or proliferation. This study aimed to determine the validity of invasion-related biomarkers of activity for AZD0530, a potent Src inhibitor currently in clinical development. Focal adhesion kinase (FAK) and paxillin are downstream phosphorylation substrates of Src and mediate tumor cell adhesion and invasiveness. These were therefore selected as biologically relevant markers of Src inhibition. Early breast cancer was chosen as a model as multiple samples can be collected during standard treatment and there is an intervening period in which experimental intervention can be applied. Tumor tissue was collected from diagnostic core biopsies and subsequent surgical tumor excision samples in 29 women with early breast cancer attending a single center. Protein levels were assessed quantitatively by Luminex and qualitatively by immunohistochemistry. AZD0530 inhibited tumor growth in a manner independent of dose and inhibited phosphorylation of FAK and paxillin in a dose-dependent manner in a Calu-6 xenograft model. In the clinical study, agreement of within-visit and also of between-visit measurements was high and the estimated number of patients required to detect a drug effect would be low enough to allow use of these markers as endpoints in future dose selection studies.
    Breast Cancer Research and Treatment 05/2008; 114(2):211-21. · 4.47 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To compare the effects of anastrozole and letrozole on plasma estradiol (E2) and estrone sulfate (E1S) levels. Fifty-four postmenopausal women with estrogen receptor-positive breast cancer receiving aromatase inhibitors (AIs) as part of their adjuvant therapy were randomly assigned to receive either 3 months of anastrozole (1 mg) followed by 3 months of letrozole (2.5 mg), both given orally once daily, or 3 months of the opposite sequence. Blood was taken at the same time and the same day of the week from each patient, before and after 3 months of each drug, and plasma levels of E2 and E1S were determined using highly sensitive radioimmunoassays. There were 27 patients in each group. The mean age of the patients was 63 years (range, 49 to 83 years). Baseline E2 levels ranged from 3 pmol/L to 91 pmol/L with a mean of 25.7 pmol/L. Only one of 54 (2%) patients had an E2 value >or= 3 pmol/L after receiving letrozole, versus 20 of 54 (37%) patients after receiving anastrozole (P < .001). Extrapolation revealed a mean E2 level after anastrozole treatment of 2.71 pmol/L (range, 2.38 to 3.08 pmol/L). Following letrozole, it was 1.56 pmol/L (range, 1.37 to 1.78 pmol/L). Mean residual E2 was 10.1% for anastrozole and 5.9% for letrozole. Residual E1S levels were 4.6% for anastrozole and 2.0% for letrozole (P = .001). Letrozole reduces plasma E2 and E1S levels to a significantly greater extent than anastrozole in postmenopausal women taking AIs as part of their adjuvant therapy for hormone receptor-positive breast cancer.
    Journal of Clinical Oncology 05/2008; 26(10):1671-6. · 17.88 Impact Factor
  • EJC Supplements 04/2008; 6(7):52-53. · 2.71 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Changes in proliferation as measured by Ki67 occur within 14 days of starting treatment with an aromatase inhibitor and these changes have been shown to be predictors of long term outcome. This study aimed to compare changes in proliferation following 14 days of treatment with anastrozole and letrozole. Two hundred and six women with 209 estrogen receptor (ER) positive operable breast cancers (three bilateral) were randomly allocated to receive either 14 days treatment with 2.5 mg of letrozole or 1 mg of anastrozole prior to surgery. Changes in expression of estrogen (ER) and progesterone receptors (PgR) as assessed by ALLRED scores and proliferation as assessed by Ki67 were analysed. The HER2 status of each tumour was also assessed using a combination of the Hercept test and FISH. Both letrozole and anastrozole reduced ER expression (ALLRED score) by a mean of 0.32 (0.20-0.44), P<0.001 and PgR fell by a mean of 2.54 (2.20-2.89) P<0.0001. Letrozole reduced proliferation from a geometric mean of 6.37% to 0.81%, P<0.0001 and anastrozole reduced proliferation from 5.81% to 0.77%, P<0.0001. There was no differences between drugs in the fall in ER, PgR or proliferation. Both letrozole and anastrozole produced significant falls in proliferation in both HER2 positive and HER2 negative cancers, all P<0.001. 14 days of both letrozole and anastrozole reduces proliferation, ER and PgR expression. No significant difference between these two drugs was identified.
    Breast Cancer Research and Treatment 04/2008; 114(3):495-501. · 4.47 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Fulvestrant (Faslodex) is a pure anti-oestrogen that reduces markers of hormone sensitivity and proliferation in postmenopausal women with oestrogen-receptor (ER)-positive breast cancer. This randomised trial compared the effects on the tumours of a single dose of 750mg fulvestrant to those of daily tamoxifen (20mg) taken 14-16 days prior to surgery in 60 premenopausal women with ER-positive primary breast cancer. There were statistically significant falls in the expression of ER and Ki67 levels compared to the baseline with both drugs. Both drugs caused a decrease in PgR expression from baseline but this was only statistically significant with fulvestrant. No statistically significant differences were seen between the two treatment groups. Fulvestrant caused an increase in circulating levels of oestradiol, irrespective of the stage of the menstrual cycle at which patients commenced treatment. No major changes were seen in LH, FSH and progesterone levels with either drug. The most common adverse events with fulvestrant were headaches, hot flushes, nausea and disturbance of menses. Contrary to previous studies with fulvestrant 250mg, these findings suggest that at a dose of 750mg fulvestrant is effective at reducing the effects of oestrogen on ER-positive breast cancer in premenopausal women.
    European Journal of Cancer 03/2008; 44(3):391-9. · 4.82 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The aim of this study was to investigate the potential benefits of prolonged treatment with neoadjuvant letrozole. About 182 consecutive patients have been treated in Edinburgh with neoadjuvant letrozole for 3 months or longer and 63 patients have continued on letrozole beyond 3 months. Outcomes are reported. Of the 63 patients who continued on letrozole, 38 patients took letrozole for more than 1 year and 23 took letrozole for more than 24 months. The median reduction in clinical volume in the first 3 months in these 63 patients was 52%. Similar reductions in median clinical volume were seen between three to 6 months (50%), 6-12 months and 12-24 months (medians 37 and 33%, respectively). At 3 months 69.8% of the 182 patients had a partial or complete response. The response rate increased to 83.5% with prolonged letrozole treatment. Continuing letrozole beyond 3 months increased the number of women who initially required mastectomy or had locally advanced breast cancer who were subsequently suitable for breast conserving surgery from 60% (81/134) at 3 months to 72% (96/134). Thirty-three women remain on letrozole alone (man age at diagnosis 83 years) and at 3 years the median time to treatment failure has not been reached. Continuing letrozole in responding patients beyond 3-4 months achieves further clinical reduction in tumour size. For elderly women with a short life expectancy letrozole alone may provide long-term disease control.
    Breast Cancer Research and Treatment 03/2008; 113(1):145-51. · 4.47 Impact Factor
  • EJC Supplements 09/2007; 5(3):10-10. · 2.71 Impact Factor
  • EJC Supplements 09/2007; 5(3):30-30. · 2.71 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: In patients with hormone receptor positive DCIS tamoxifen reduces recurrence rates by almost 50%. Few data are available with aromatase inhibitors from randomised studies. In the ATAC study there were three DCIS lesions in the anastrozole arm and four in the tamoxifen arm in the women with ER positive invasive cancer. In the MA17 study which randomised patients to up to 5 years of letrozole or placebo there was only one DCIS event in the contralateral breast in patients taking letrozole and five on placebo. There were also four patients in this study who had DCIS in the conserved breast on placebo and none in the letrozole treated group. The few clinical data that are available therefore suggest the aromatase inhibitors are likely to be effective in DCIS. A histological review of a study of 206 postmenopausal women with invasive oestrogen receptor positive breast cancer who were randomised as part of a 14 day preoperative study to receive 2.5mg of letrozole or 1mg of anastrozole identified 27 patients with 28 pairs of tumours in whom there was sufficient ER positive DCIS in invasive cancer in the initial core biopsy and in the subsequent surgery specimen, to evaluate for PgR activity and proliferation. Within the DCIS both aromatase inhibitors significantly reduced PgR expression and both drugs also produced a significant fall in proliferation. There was a moderate degree of agreement between the fall in PgR in both the invasive cancer and DCIS (Kappa=0.5; p=0.0013) and between the fall in proliferation and between the invasive and in situ components (correlation coefficient=0.68; p<0.001). This study has shown significant effects of aromatase inhibitors on DCIS indicating that these agents are therapeutically active in this condition.
    The Journal of Steroid Biochemistry and Molecular Biology 08/2007; 106(1-5):173-9. · 4.05 Impact Factor
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    O E Young, K Valassiadou, M Dixon
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    ABSTRACT: The aim of this study was to assess whether surgeons in the UK were practising wide excision consistent with current guidelines and current evidence. Questionnaires were sent to 200 breast surgeons throughout the UK to determine current practices in breast conserving surgery. When performing a wide excision for invasive cancer, 61% of respondents always remove full thickness of breast tissue and 37% usually do. Of surgeons, 60% rarely use specimen X-ray for palpable lesions. However, 91% always take specimen X-rays in impalpable lesions, but 9% do not always take specimen X-rays for impalpable lesions. In 93% of units, the pathologist always reports the distance to the nearest margin. For both invasive and in situ cancer, there is a wide variation in what is considered an adequate radial margin. There is wide variation in the practice of re-excision. Of surgeons, 50% indicated that they wish wider margins in the presence of an extensive in situ component and 39% wish wider margins in younger women. The results show a large variation in practice with many surgeons not treating patients in accordance with current guidelines and evidence.
    Annals of The Royal College of Surgeons of England 04/2007; 89(2):118-23. · 1.22 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Aromatase inhibitors such as anastrozole and letrozole are highly effective suppressants of estrogen synthesis in postmenopausal women and are the most effective endocrine treatments for hormone receptor positive breast cancer in such women. Little is known of the molecular effects of these agents on human breast carcinomas in vivo. We randomly assigned primary estrogen receptor positive breast cancer patients to treatment with anastrozole or letrozole for 2 weeks before surgery. Expression profiling using cDNA arrays was conducted on pretreatment and post-treatment biopsies. Sample pairs from 34 patients provided sufficient RNA for analysis. Profound changes in gene expression were seen with both aromatase inhibitors, including many classical estrogen-dependent genes such as TFF1, CCND1, PDZK1 and AGR2, but also many other genes that are likely to represent secondary responses; decrease in the expression of proliferation-related genes were particularly prominent. Many upregulated genes are involved in extracellular matrix remodelling, including collagens and members of the small leucine-rich proteoglycan family (LUM, DCN, and ASPN). No significant differences were seen between letrozole and anastrozole in terms of molecular effects. The gene changes were integrated into a Global Index of Dependence on Estrogen (GIDE), which enumerates the genes changing by at least twofold with therapy. The GIDE varied markedly between tumours and related significantly to pretreatment levels of HER2 and changes in immunohistochemically detected Ki67. Our findings identify the transcriptional signatures associated with aromatase inhibitor treatment of primary breast tumours. Larger datasets using this approach should enable identification of estrogen-dependent molecular changes, which are the determinants of benefit or resistance to endocrine therapy.
    Breast cancer research: BCR 02/2007; 9(3):R37. · 5.88 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To investigate the impact of human epidermal growth factor receptor (HER) 1 and HER2 gene amplification on endocrine therapy responsiveness, a fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) study was conducted on tumor samples from 305 postmenopausal patients with stage II and III estrogen receptor (ER) -positive (ER > or = 10%) breast cancers treated on two independent neoadjuvant endocrine therapy trials. FISH analysis focused on HER1 and/or HER2 immunohistochemistry (IHC) -positive patients and a random selection of HER1/2 IHC-negative patients. HER2 FISH status was correlated with response and changes in the proliferation marker Ki67. HER1 was rarely amplified (< 1%), and HER2 amplification was observed in 9.2% of patients. Letrozole response by clinical measurement (71% HER2 FISH positive v 71% HER2 FISH negative), mammogram (44% HER2 FISH positive v 47% HER2 FISH negative), or ultrasound (47% HER2 FISH positive v 54% HER2 FISH negative) was not impaired by HER2 FISH-positive status. In contrast, HER2 FISH-positive tumors showed higher histologic grade (P = .009), higher pretreatment Ki67 (P = .005), and less Ki67 suppression after letrozole when compared with HER2 FISH-negative tumors (P = .0001). Similar observations regarding Ki67 were made in a smaller cohort of tamoxifen-treated tumors. Neoadjuvant letrozole is clinically effective in ER-positive HER2 FISH-positive tumors, indicating sensitivity to short-term estrogen deprivation. However, continued proliferation despite ongoing letrozole or tamoxifen treatment in the majority of ER-positive HER2 FISH-positive samples (88%) could imply therapeutic resistance that may manifest later in the clinical course of the disease. Discordance between clinical and biomarker findings in this study serves to emphasize the need for surrogate end point validation in neoadjuvant endocrine trials through correlation with information on long-term outcomes.
    Journal of Clinical Oncology 07/2006; 24(19):3019-25. · 17.88 Impact Factor
  • Ejc Supplements - EJC SUPPL. 01/2006; 4(2):150-151.
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  • Ejc Supplements - EJC SUPPL. 01/2006; 4(2):81-82.

Publication Stats

378 Citations
101.81 Total Impact Points


  • 2008–2014
    • Western General Hospital
      Edinburgh, Scotland, United Kingdom
    • University of Glasgow
      Glasgow, Scotland, United Kingdom
  • 2010
    • University Hospital Of South Manchester NHS Foundation Trust
      Manchester, England, United Kingdom
  • 2006
    • Washington University in St. Louis
      San Luis, Missouri, United States