R C Donehower

Johns Hopkins Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland, United States

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Publications (176)1500.8 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Background Somatic mutations have the potential to encode "non-self" immunogenic antigens. We hypothesized that tumors with a large number of somatic mutations due to mismatch-repair defects may be susceptible to immune checkpoint blockade. Methods We conducted a phase 2 study to evaluate the clinical activity of pembrolizumab, an anti-programmed death 1 immune checkpoint inhibitor, in 41 patients with progressive metastatic carcinoma with or without mismatch-repair deficiency. Pembrolizumab was administered intravenously at a dose of 10 mg per kilogram of body weight every 14 days in patients with mismatch repair-deficient colorectal cancers, patients with mismatch repair-proficient colorectal cancers, and patients with mismatch repair-deficient cancers that were not colorectal. The coprimary end points were the immune-related objective response rate and the 20-week immune-related progression-free survival rate. Results The immune-related objective response rate and immune-related progression-free survival rate were 40% (4 of 10 patients) and 78% (7 of 9 patients), respectively, for mismatch repair-deficient colorectal cancers and 0% (0 of 18 patients) and 11% (2 of 18 patients) for mismatch repair-proficient colorectal cancers. The median progression-free survival and overall survival were not reached in the cohort with mismatch repair-deficient colorectal cancer but were 2.2 and 5.0 months, respectively, in the cohort with mismatch repair-proficient colorectal cancer (hazard ratio for disease progression or death, 0.10 [P<0.001], and hazard ratio for death, 0.22 [P=0.05]). Patients with mismatch repair-deficient noncolorectal cancer had responses similar to those of patients with mismatch repair-deficient colorectal cancer (immune-related objective response rate, 71% [5 of 7 patients]; immune-related progression-free survival rate, 67% [4 of 6 patients]). Whole-exome sequencing revealed a mean of 1782 somatic mutations per tumor in mismatch repair-deficient tumors, as compared with 73 in mismatch repair-proficient tumors (P=0.007), and high somatic mutation loads were associated with prolonged progression-free survival (P=0.02). Conclusions This study showed that mismatch-repair status predicted clinical benefit of immune checkpoint blockade with pembrolizumab. (Funded by Johns Hopkins University and others; ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT01876511 .).
    New England Journal of Medicine 05/2015; DOI:10.1056/NEJMoa1500596 · 54.42 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Background:Rilotumumab, an investigational, monoclonal antibody, inhibits MET-mediated signalling. In a randomized phase 2 trial of rilotumumab±epirubicin/cisplatin/capecitabine in gastric or oesophagogastric junction cancer, patients receiving rilotumumab showed a trend towards improved survival, especially in MET-positive patients, but no clear dose-response relationship was observed. Exposure-response and biomarker analyses were used for dose selection and to differentiate patient subpopulations that may benefit most from treatment. Here, we analyse rilotumumab exposure-survival and exposure-safety and the impact of MET expression on these relationships.Methods:Individual rilotumumab exposure parameters were generated using population pharmacokinetic modelling. Relationships among rilotumumab dose (7.5 and 15 mg kg(-1)), exposure, and clinical outcomes (progression-free survival (PFS) and overall survival (OS)) were evaluated with Cox regression models and Kaplan-Meier plots. MET status and other baseline covariates were evaluated in subgroup and multivariate analyses. Treatment-emergent adverse events were summarised by exposure.Results:Among MET-positive patients, higher rilotumumab exposure, vs placebo and low exposure, was associated with improved median PFS (80% CI: 7.0 (5.7-9.7) vs 4.4 (2.9-4.9) and 5.5 (4.2-6.8) months) and OS (13.4 (10.6-18.6) vs 5.7 (4.7-10.2) and 8.1 (6.9-11.1) months) without increased toxicity. No rilotumumab benefit was seen among MET-negative patients.Conclusions:Rilotumumab had an exposure-dependent treatment effect in patients with MET-positive gastric or oesophagogastric junction cancer.British Journal of Cancer advance online publication 13 January 2015; doi:10.1038/bjc.2014.649 www.bjcancer.com.
    British Journal of Cancer 01/2015; 112(3). DOI:10.1038/bjc.2014.649 · 4.82 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Background:We completed a phase I clinical trial to test the safety and toxicity of combined treatment with cixutumumab (anti-IGF-1R antibody) and selumetinib (MEK 1/2 inhibitor).Methods:Patients with advanced solid tumours, refractory to standard therapy received selumetinib hydrogen sulphate capsules orally twice daily, and cixutumumab intravenously on days 1 and 15 of each 28-day cycle. The study used a 3+3 design, with a dose-finding cohort followed by an expansion cohort at the maximally tolerated dose that included pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic correlative studies.Results:Thirty patients were enrolled, with 16 in the dose-finding cohort and 14 in the expansion cohort. Grade 3 or greater toxicities included nausea and vomiting, anaemia, CVA, hypertension, hyperglycaemia, and ophthalmic symptoms. The maximally tolerated combination dose was 50 mg twice daily of selumetinib and 12 mg kg(-1) every 2 weeks of cixutumumab. Two patients achieved a partial response (one unconfirmed), including a patient with BRAF wild-type thyroid carcinoma, and a patient with squamous cell carcinoma of the tongue, and six patients achieved time to progression of >6 months, including patients with thyroid carcinoma, colorectal carcinoma, and basal cell carcinoma. Comparison of pre- and on-treatment biopsies showed significant suppression of pERK and pS6 activity with treatment.Conclusions:Our study of anti-IGF-1R antibody cixutumumab and MEK 1/2 inhibitor selumetinib showed that the combination is safe and well-tolerated at these doses, with preliminary evidence of clinical benefit and pharmacodynamic evidence of target inhibition.British Journal of Cancer advance online publication 30 September 2014; doi:10.1038/bjc.2014.515 www.bjcancer.com.
    British Journal of Cancer 09/2014; 112(1). DOI:10.1038/bjc.2014.515 · 4.82 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Background Dysregulation of the hepatocyte growth factor (HGF)/MET pathway promotes tumour growth and metastasis. Rilotumumab is a fully human, monoclonal antibody that neutralises HGF. We aimed to assess the safety, efficacy, biomarkers, and pharmacokinetics of rilotumumab combined with epirubicin, cisplatin, and capecitabine (ECX) in patients with advanced gastric or oesophagogastric junction cancer. Methods We recruited patients (≥18 years old) with unresectable locally advanced or metastatic gastric or oesophagogastric junction adenocarcinoma, an Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group (ECOG) performance status of 0 or 1, who had not received previous systemic therapy, from 43 sites worldwide. Phase 1b was an open-label, dose de-escalation study to identify a safe dose of rilotumumab (initial dose 15 mg/kg intravenously on day 1) plus ECX (epirubicin 50 mg/m2 intravenously on day 1, cisplatin 60 mg/m2 intravenously on day 1, capecitabine 625 mg/m2 twice a day orally on days 1–21, respectively), administered every 3 weeks. The phase 1b primary endpoint was the incidence of dose-limiting toxicities in all phase 1b patients who received at least one dose of rilotumumab and completed the dose-limiting toxicity assessment window (first cycle of therapy). Phase 2 was a double-blind study that randomly assigned patients (1:1:1) using an interactive voice response system to receive rilotumumab 15 mg/kg, rilotumumab 7·5 mg/kg, or placebo, plus ECX (doses as above), stratified by ECOG performance status and disease extent. The phase 2 primary endpoint was progression-free survival (PFS), analysed by intention to treat. The study is registered with ClinicalTrials.gov, number NCT00719550. Findings Seven of the nine patients enrolled in the phase 1b study received at least one dose of rilotumumab 15 mg/kg, only two of whom had three dose-limiting toxicities: palmar-plantar erythrodysesthesia, cerebral ischaemia, and deep-vein thrombosis. In phase 2, 121 patients were randomly assigned (40 to rilotumumab 15 mg/kg; 42 to rilotumumab 7·5 mg/kg; 39 to placebo). Median PFS was 5·1 months (95% CI 2·9–7·0) in the rilotumumab 15 mg/kg group, 6·8 months (4·5–7·5) in the rilotumumab 7·5 mg/kg group, 5·7 months (4·5–7·0) in both rilotumumab groups combined, and 4·2 months (2·9–4·9) in the placebo group. The hazard ratio for PFS events compared with placebo was 0·69 (80% CI 0·49–0·97; p=0·164) for rilotumumab 15 mg/kg, 0·53 (80% CI 0·38–0·73; p=0·009) for rilotumumab 7·5 mg/kg, and 0·60 (80% CI 0·45–0·79; p=0·016) for combined rilotumumab. Any grade adverse events more common in the combined rilotumumab group than in the placebo group included haematological adverse events (neutropenia in 44 [54%] of 81 patients vs 13 [33%] of 39 patients; anaemia in 32 [40%] vs 11 [28%]; and thrombocytopenia in nine [11%] vs none), peripheral oedema (22 [27%] vs three [8%]), and venous thromboembolism (16 [20%] vs five [13%]). Grade 3–4 adverse events more common with rilotumumab included neutropenia (36 [44%] vs 11 [28%]) and venous thromboembolism (16 [20%] vs four [10%]). Serious adverse events were balanced between groups except for anaemia, which occurred more frequently in the combined rilotumumab group (ten [12%] vs none). Interpretation Rilotumumab plus ECX had no unexpected safety signals and showed greater activity than placebo plus ECX. A phase 3 study of the combination in MET-positive gastric and oesophagogastric junction cancer is in progress. Funding Amgen Inc.
    The Lancet Oncology 08/2014; 15(9). DOI:10.1016/S1470-2045(14)70023-3 · 24.73 Impact Factor
  • Journal of Clinical Oncology 05/2014; DOI:10.1200/JCO.2013.51.6633 · 17.88 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: At diagnosis, 30% of patients with pancreatic cancer are unresectable stage 3 locally advanced. The standard treatment for locally advanced pancreatic cancer (LAPC) is not defined. The current study was conducted to assess the roles of chemotherapy and chemoradiation for LAPC treatment. Between June 2006 and March 2011, 100 patients with LAPC were treated at the Johns Hopkins Hospital. Retrospective analysis was performed to compare cumulative incidence of progression (CIP) and overall survival (OS) among different subgroups. For the 100 patients, the median OS was 15.8 months and the median CIP was 8.4 months. The combination of chemotherapy and chemoradiation before disease progression was significantly associated with improved CIP (P=0.001) and improved OS when compared with chemoradiation alone (median OS: 16.4 vs. 11.1 mo, P=0.03). Among patients receiving combination treatment, patients who received chemotherapy first followed by chemoradiation had a trend toward lower CIP (P=0.09) and improved OS (median OS: 18.1 vs. 11.0 mo, P=0.09). Patients who received >2 cycles of chemotherapy before chemoradiation had a significantly decreased CIP (P=0.008) and a trend toward better OS (median OS: 19.4 vs. 15.7 mo, P=0.10). On multivariate analysis, receiving >2 cycles of chemotherapy before chemoradiation was associated with improved CIP. Although combination chemotherapy and chemoradiation is favored in the treatment of LAPC, longer induction chemotherapy may play a more important role in sensitization of tumors to subsequent chemoradiation. Our results support treating patients with induction chemotherapy for at least 3 cycles followed by consolidative chemoradiation. These results merit further validation by a prospective study.
    American journal of clinical oncology 12/2013; DOI:10.1097/COC.0000000000000022 · 2.61 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Molecular biomarkers offer the potential for refining prognostic determinants in patients undergoing cancer surgery. Among patients with colorectal cancer, KRAS and BRAF are important biomarkers, but their role in patients undergoing surgical therapy for liver metastases is unknown. In this study, the incidence and prognostic significance of KRAS and BRAF mutations were determined in patients undergoing surgical therapy of colorectal liver metastases (CRLM). KRAS and BRAF analysis was performed on 202 patients undergoing surgery for CRLM between 2003 and 2008. Tumor samples were analyzed for somatic mutations using sequencing analysis (KRAS, codon12/13, BRAF, V600E). The frequency of mutations was ascertained, and their impact on outcome was determined relative to other clinicopathologic factors. KRAS gene mutations were detected in 58/202 patients (29%). In contrast, mutation in the BRAF gene was identified in very low frequency in this surgical cohort, found in only 4/202 (2%) patients. On multivariate analysis, KRAS mutation was associated with worse survival (hazard ratio [HR], 1.99; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.21-3.26), as well as recurrence risk (HR, 1.68; 95% CI, 1.04-2.70). Although other clinicopathologic features, including tumor number, carcinoembryonic antigen, and primary stage were also associated with survival, KRAS status remained independently predictive of outcome. The low incidence of BRAF mutation limited assessment of its prognostic impact. Whereas KRAS mutations were found in approximately one third of patients, BFAF mutations were found in only 2% of patients undergoing surgery for CRLM. KRAS status was an independent predictor of overall and recurrence-free survival. Molecular biomarkers such as KRAS may help to refine our prognostic assessment of patients undergoing surgical therapy for CRLM. Cancer 2013;. © 2013 American Cancer Society.
    Cancer 12/2013; 119(23). DOI:10.1002/cncr.28347 · 4.90 Impact Factor
  • International journal of radiation oncology, biology, physics 11/2013; 87(3):458-9. DOI:10.1016/j.ijrobp.2013.06.2039 · 4.18 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Preclinical reports support the concept of synergy between cancer vaccines and immune checkpoint blockade in nonimmunogenic tumors. In particular, cytotoxic T lymphocyte-associated antigen-4 (CTLA-4) antibodies have been successfully combined with GM-CSF cell-based vaccines (GVAX). Ipilimumab (anti-CTLA-4) has been tested as a single agent in patients with pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDA) resulting in a delayed response at a dose of 3 mg/kg. Our study evaluated ipilimumab 10 mg/kg (arm 1) and ipilimumab 10 mg/kg+GVAX (arm 2). A total of 30 patients with previously treated advanced PDA were randomized (1:1). Induction doses were administered every 3 weeks for a total of 4 doses followed by maintenance dosing every 12 weeks. Two patients in arm 1 showed evidence of stable disease (7 and 22 wk) but none demonstrated CA19-9 biochemical responses. In contrast, 3 patients in arm 2 had evidence of prolonged disease stabilization (31, 71, and 81 wk) and 7 patients experienced CA19-9 declines. In 2 of these patients, disease stabilization occurred after an initial period of progression. The median overall survival (OS) (3.6 vs. 5.7 mo, hazards ratio: 0.51, P=0.072) and 1 year OS (7 vs. 27%) favored arm 2. Similar to prior ipilimumab studies, 20% of patients in each arm had grade 3/4 immune-related adverse events. Among patients with OS>4.3 months, there was an increase in the peak mesothelin-specific T cells (P=0.014) and enhancement of the T-cell repertoire (P=0.031). In conclusion, checkpoint blockade in combination with GVAX has the potential for clinical benefit and should be evaluated in a larger study.
    Journal of immunotherapy (Hagerstown, Md.: 1997) 09/2013; 36(7):382-9. DOI:10.1097/CJI.0b013e31829fb7a2 · 3.35 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Long-term survival rates for patients with resected pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) have stagnated at 20% for more than a decade, demonstrating the need to develop novel adjuvant therapies. Gemcitabine-erlotinib therapy has demonstrated a survival benefit for patients with metastatic PDAC. Here we report the first phase 2 study of erlotinib in combination with adjuvant chemoradiation and chemotherapy for resected PDAC. Forty-eight patients with resected PDAC received adjuvant erlotinib (100 mg daily) and capecitabine (800 mg/m(2) twice daily Monday-Friday) concurrently with intensity modulated radiation therapy (IMRT), 50.4 Gy over 28 fractions followed by 4 cycles of gemcitabine (1000 mg/m(2) on days 1, 8, and 15 every 28 days) and erlotinib (100 mg daily). The primary endpoint was recurrence-free survival (RFS). The median follow-up time was 18.2 months (interquartile range, 13.8-27.1). Lymph nodes were positive in 85% of patients, and margins were positive in 17%. The median RFS was 15.6 months (95% confidence interval [CI], 13.4-17.9), and the median overall survival (OS) was 24.4 months (95% CI, 18.9-29.7). Multivariate analysis with adjustment for known prognostic factors showed that tumor diameter >3 cm was predictive for inferior RFS (hazard ratio, 4.01; P=.001) and OS (HR, 4.98; P=.02), and the development of dermatitis was associated with improved RFS (HR, 0.27; P=.009). During CRT and post-CRT chemotherapy, the rates of grade 3/4 toxicity were 31%/2% and 35%/8%, respectively. Erlotinib can be safely administered with adjuvant IMRT-based CRT and chemotherapy. The efficacy of this regimen appears comparable to that of existing adjuvant regimens. Radiation Therapy Oncology Group 0848 will ultimately determine whether erlotinib produces a survival benefit in patients with resected pancreatic cancer.
    International journal of radiation oncology, biology, physics 07/2013; 86(4):678-85. DOI:10.1016/j.ijrobp.2013.03.032 · 4.18 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: PURPOSETNFerade biologic is a novel means of delivering tumor necrosis factor alpha to tumor cells by gene transfer. We herein report final results of the largest randomized phase III trial performed to date among patients with locally advanced pancreatic cancer (LAPC) and the first to test gene transfer against this malignancy.Patients And methodsIn all, 304 patients were randomly assigned 2:1 to standard of care plus TNFerade (SOC + TNFerade) versus standard of care alone (SOC). SOC consisted of 50.4 Gy in 28 fractions with concurrent fluorouracil (200 mg/m(2) per day continuous infusion). TNFerade was injected intratumorally before the first fraction of radiotherapy each week at a dose of 4 × 10(11) particle units by using either a percutaneous transabdominal or an endoscopic ultrasound approach. Four weeks after chemoradiotherapy, patients began gemcitabine (1,000 mg/m(2) intravenously) with or without erlotinib (100 to 150 mg per day orally) until progression or toxicity.ResultsThe analysis included 187 patients randomly assigned to SOC + TNFerade and 90 to SOC by using a modified intention-to-treat approach. Median follow-up was 9.1 months (range, 0.1 to 50.5 months). Median survival was 10.0 months for patients in both the SOC + TNFerade and SOC arms (hazard ratio [HR], 0.90; 95% CI, 0.66 to 1.22; P = .26). Median progression-free survival (PFS) was 6.8 months for SOC + TNFerade versus 7.0 months for SOC (HR, 0.96; 95% CI, 0.69 to 1.32; P = .51). Among patients treated on the SOC + TNFerade arm, multivariate analysis showed that TNFerade injection by an endoscopic ultrasound-guided transgastric/transduodenal approach rather than a percutaneous transabdominal approach was a risk factor for inferior PFS (HR, 2.08; 95% CI, 1.06 to 4.06; P = .032). The patients in the SOC + TNFerade arm experienced more grade 1 to 2 fever and chills than those in the SOC arm (P < .001) but both arms had similar rates of grade 3 to 4 toxicities (all P > .05). CONCLUSIONSOC + TNFerade is safe but not effective for prolonging survival in patients with LAPC.
    Journal of Clinical Oncology 01/2013; 31(7). DOI:10.1200/JCO.2012.44.7516 · 17.88 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Background This phase Ib study was designed to determine the maximum tolerated doses (MTD) and dose limiting toxicities (DLTs) of irinotecan and cetuximab with sorafenib. Secondary objectives included characterizing the pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics and evaluating preliminary antitumor activity in patients with advanced colorectal cancer (CRC). Methods Patients with metastatic, pretreated CRC were treated at five dose levels. Results Eighteen patients were recruited with median age 56.5 years. In the first five patients treated, 2 irinotecan related DLTs were observed. With reduced dose intensity irinotecan, there were no further DLTs. The most common toxicities were diarrhea, nausea/vomiting, fatigue, anorexia and rash. DLTs included neutropenia and thrombocytopenia. Two patients had partial responses (one with a KRAS mutation) and 8 had stable disease (8-36 weeks). The median progression free survival (PFS) and overall survival (OS) were 2.5 and 4.7 months respectively. Pharmacokinetic analyses suggest sorafenib and metabolite exposure correlate with OS and DLTs. Conclusions The recommended phase II dose (RP2D) is irinotecan 100 mg/m(2) i.v. days 1, 8; cetuximab 400 mg/m(2) i.v. days 1 and 250 mg/m(2) i.v. weekly; and sorafenib 400 mg orally twice daily in advanced, pretreated CRC. The combination resulted in a modest response rate.
    Investigational New Drugs 05/2012; 31(2). DOI:10.1007/s10637-012-9820-z · 2.93 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Purpose S-trans,trans-Farnesylthiosalicylic Acid (FTS, salirasib) inhibits Ras-dependent cell growth by dislodging all isoforms of Ras, including mutant Ras, from the plasma membrane. This study evaluated the activity, safety, and toxicity of salirasib in preclinical models and patients with metastatic pancreatic adenocarcinoma (PDA). Patients and methods In the preclinical study, salirasib was tested, alone and in combination with gemcitabine, in patient derived xenografts (PDX) of PDA. In the clinical study, treatment-naïve patients with advanced, metastatic PDA were treated with a standard dose schedule of gemcitabine and salirasib 200-800 mg orally (PO) twice daily (bid) for 21 days every 28 days. Tissue from preclinical models and patients' biopsies were collected pre-treatment and on Cycle (C) 1, Day (D) 9 to characterize the effect of gemcitabine and salirasib on activated Ras protein levels. Plasma samples for pharmacokinetics were collected for salirasib administered alone and in combination. Results Salirasib inhibited the growth of 2/14 PDX models of PDA and modulated Ras signaling in these tumors. Nineteen patients were enrolled. No DLTs occurred. Common adverse events included hematologic and gastrointestinal toxicities and fatigue. The median overall survival was 6.2 months and the 1 year survival 37 %. In 2 patients in whom paired tissue biopsies were available, Ras and KRas protein levels were decreased on C1D9. Salirasib exposure was not altered by gemcitabine and did not correlate with PD outcomes. Conclusion The combination of gemcitabine and salirasib appears well-tolerated, with no alteration of salirasib exposure, and exerted clinical and PD activity in PDA.
    Investigational New Drugs 05/2012; 30(6). DOI:10.1007/s10637-012-9818-6 · 2.93 Impact Factor
  • European Journal of Cancer 09/2011; 47. DOI:10.1016/S0959-8049(11)71815-9 · 4.82 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Studies treating adenocarcinoma of the pancreas with gemcitabine alone or in combination with a doublet have demonstrated modest improvements in survival. Recent reports have suggested that using the triple-drug regimen FOLFIRINOX can substantially extend survival in patients with metastatic disease. We were interested in determining the clinical benefit of another three-drug regimen of gemcitabine, docetaxel and capecitabine (GTX) in patients with advanced pancreatic adenocarcinoma. The cases of 154 patients, who received treatment with GTX chemotherapy with histologically confirmed locally advanced or metastatic pancreatic adenocarcinoma, were retrospectively reviewed. All demographic and clinical data were captured including prior therapy, adverse events, treatment response and survival. One hundred and seventeen metastatic and 37 locally advanced cases of adenocarcinoma of the pancreas were reviewed. Partial responses were noted in 11% of cases, and stable disease was observed in 62% of patients. Responses significantly correlated with toxicity (neutropenia, ALT elevation and hospitalizations). Grade 3 or greater hematologic and non-hematologic toxicities were noted in 41% and 9% of cases, respectively. Overall median survival was 11.6 months. Chemotherapy naïve patients with metastatic and locally advanced disease achieved a median survival of 11.3 and 25.0 months, respectively. We observe a substantial survival benefit with GTX chemotherapy in our cohort of patients with advanced pancreatic cancer. These findings warrant further investigation of this combination in this patient population.
    Cancer Chemotherapy and Pharmacology 07/2011; 69(2):415-24. DOI:10.1007/s00280-011-1704-y · 2.57 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Metastasis and drug resistance are the major causes of mortality in patients with pancreatic cancer. Once developed, the progression of pancreatic cancer metastasis is virtually unstoppable with current therapies. Here, we report the remarkable clinical outcome of a patient with advanced, gemcitabine-resistant, pancreatic cancer who was later treated with DNA damaging agents, on the basis of the observation of significant activity of this class of drugs against a personalized xenograft generated from the patient's surgically resected tumor. Mitomycin C treatment, selected on the basis of its robust preclinical activity in a personalized xenograft generated from the patient's tumor, resulted in long-lasting (36+ months) tumor response. Global genomic sequencing revealed biallelic inactivation of the gene encoding PalB2 protein in this patient's cancer; the mutation is predicted to disrupt BRCA1 and BRCA2 interactions critical to DNA double-strand break repair. This work suggests that inactivation of the PALB2 gene is a determinant of response to DNA damage in pancreatic cancer and a new target for personalizing cancer treatment. Integrating personalized xenografts with unbiased exomic sequencing led to customized therapy, tailored to the genetic environment of the patient's tumor, and identification of a new biomarker of drug response in a lethal cancer.
    Molecular Cancer Therapeutics 01/2011; 10(1):3-8. DOI:10.1158/1535-7163.MCT-10-0893 · 6.11 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Cisplatin and several related antineoplastic agents used to treat many types of solid tumors are neurotoxic, and most patients completing a full course of cisplatin chemotherapy develop a clinically detectable sensory neuropathy. Effective neuroprotective therapies have been sought. To examine the efficacy of purported chemoprotective agents to prevent or limit the neurotoxicity of cisplatin and related agents. We searched the Cochrane Neuromuscular Disease Group Specialized Register (25 August 2010), the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (Issue 3, 2010 in The Cochrane Library), MEDLINE (January 1966 to August 2010), EMBASE (January 1980 to August 2010), LILACS (January 1982 to August 2010), CINAHL (January 1982 to August 2010) for randomized trials designed to evaluate neuroprotective agents used to prevent or limit neurotoxicity of cisplatin and related agents among human patients. Quasi-randomized or randomized controlled trials whose participants received cisplatin (or related compounds) chemotherapy with or without a potential chemoprotectant (acetylcysteine, amifostine, ACTH, BNP7787, calcium and magnesium, diethyldithiocarbamate, glutathione, Org 2766, oxcarbazepine, or vitamin E) and were evaluated zero to six months after completing chemotherapy using quantitative sensory testing (primary) or other measures including nerve conduction studies or neurological impairment rating using validated scales (secondary). We identified 16 randomized trials involving five possible chemoprotective agents in the initial 2006 review. Each study was reviewed by two authors who extracted the data and reached consensus. The 2010 update identified 11 additional randomized trials consisting of nine possible chemoprotective agents, including three treatments (acetylcysteine, calcium and magnesium, and oxcarbazepine) not among those described in the 2006 review. The included trials in the updated review involved eight unrelated treatments and included many disparate measures of neuropathy, resulting in insufficient data for any one measure to combine the results in most instances. One of four eligible amifostine trials (541 total participants in all four trials) used quantitative sensory testing and demonstrated a favorable outcome in terms of amifostine neuroprotection, but the vibration perception threshold result was based on data from only 14 participants receiving amifostine who completed the post-treatment evaluation and should be regarded with caution. Of the six eligible glutathione trials (354 participants), one used quantitative sensory testing but reported only qualitative analyses. Four eligible Org 2766 trials (311 participants) employed quantitative sensory testing reported disparate results; meta-analyses of three trials using comparable measures showed no significant vibration perception threshold neuroprotection. The remaining trial reported only descriptive analyses. The single eligible trials involving acetylcysteine (14 participants), diethyldithiocarbamate (195 participants), calcium and magnesium (33 participants), and oxcarbazepine (32 participants) and the two eligible trials involving vitamin E (57 participants) did not perform quantitative sensory testing. In all, data from 1,537 participants were included. At present, the data are insufficient to conclude that any of the purported chemoprotective agents (acetylcysteine, amifostine, calcium and magnesium, diethyldithiocarbamate, glutathione, Org 2766, oxycarbazepine, or Vitamin E) prevent or limit the neurotoxicity of platin drugs among human patients.
    Cochrane database of systematic reviews (Online) 01/2011; DOI:10.1002/14651858.CD005228.pub3 · 5.94 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Erlotinib is approved for the treatment of advanced pancreas cancer. We conducted a prospective trial to determine the safety profile and recommended phase 2 dose of erlotinib and capecitabine given concurrently with intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) in resected pancreatic cancer patients. The pharmacokinetic profile of this combination was also evaluated. Patients with resected pancreatic adenocarcinoma received erlotinib and capecitabine concurrently with IMRT delivered at 1.8 Gy daily in 28 fractions (total = 50.4 Gy). The starting dose level (DL 1) was erlotinib 150mgdaily and capecitabine 800 mg/m(2) twice daily without interruption. The next lower dose level (DL -1) was erlotinib 100 mg daily and capecitabine 800 mg/m(2) twice daily (Monday to Friday). Plasma samples were obtained for pharmacokinetic analysis. Thirteen patients were enrolled in total. At DL 1, six of the seven treated patients were evaluable for toxicities. Four completed planned treatment, but all required treatment interruption or dose reduction. The dose-limiting toxicities were neutropenia, diarrhea, and rash. Six patients were subsequently enrolled to and completed planned treatment in DL-1. Themost common toxicities were fatigue, elevated liver enzymes, and anorexia. The pharmacokinetic parameters of erlotinib and OSI-420 were not significantly different in the presence or absence of capecitabine and were consistent with historical controls. When administered concurrently with IMRT, erlotinib 100 mg daily and capecitabine 800 mg/m(2) twice daily (Monday to Friday) can be administered safely in resected pancreas cancer patients, and is the recommended regimen for efficacy studies using this regimen.
    Translational oncology 12/2010; 3(6):373-9. DOI:10.1593/tlo.10196 · 3.40 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: RATIONALE: This phase I study was conducted to determine the maximum tolerated dose (MTD) of erlotinib, an oral epidermal growth factor receptor tyrosine kinase inhibitor, with 5-fluorouracil/leucovorin/oxaliplatin (FOLFOX4) in patients with advanced colorectal cancer (CRC). Bevacizumab was later included as standard of care at the MTD. PATIENTS AND METHODS: Patients received FOLFOX4 with escalating doses of erlotinib: dose level (DL) 1, 50 mg; DL 2, 100 mg; and DL 3, 150 mg once daily continuously. Bevacizumab 5 mg/kg days 1 and 15 was added at the MTD upon Food and Drug Administration approval. Correlative studies included pharmacokinetics, pharmacodynamics was assessed in paired skin biopsies, and fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography scans. RESULTS: Fifteen patients received 60 cycles (120 FOLFOX treatments). Two dose-limiting toxicities (DLTs) were seen at DL 3: intolerable grade 2 rash (Common Terminology Criteria for Adverse Events version 2) lasting > 1 week, and grade 4 neutropenia. Dose level 2 was expanded to 6 more patients, this time adding bevacizumab, and 1 DLT of grade 3 mucositis occurred. As expected, the primary toxicities were cytopenias, diarrhea, rash, and fatigue. There were 2 occurrences of pneumatosis. One patient experienced an unrelated grade 4 myocardial infarction before starting chemotherapy. No pharmacokinetic drug interactions were observed. The Response Evaluation Criteria in Solid Tumors response rate was 11 of 14 (78%), median progression-free survival was 9.5 months, and median overall survival was 30 months. Three patients are currently alive > 3 years, with 1 having no evidence of disease. CONCLUSION: The MTD of erlotinib with FOLFOX4 with or without bevacizumab is 100 mg daily. The regimen appeared to increase toxicity but showed activity in patients with CRC.
    Clinical Colorectal Cancer 12/2010; 9(5-5):297-304. DOI:10.3816/CCC.2010.n.043 · 2.91 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The purpose of this work was to determine the efficacy of inhibiting mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) in pancreatic cancer preclinical models and translate preclinical observations to the clinic. Temsirolimus (20 mg Kg(-1) daily) was administered to freshly generated pancreatic cancer xenografts. Tumour growth inhibition was determined after 28 days. Xenografts were characterised at baseline by gene expression and comparative genomic hybridisation. Patients with advanced, gemcitabine-resistant pancreatic cancer were treated with sirolimus (5 mg daily). The primary end point was 6-month survival rate (6mSR). Correlative studies included immunohistochemistry assessment of pathway expression in baseline tumours, drug pharmacokinetics (PKs), response assessment by FDG-PET and pharmacodynamic effects in peripheral-blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs). In all, 4 of 17 xenografts (23%) responded to treatment. Sensitive tumours were characterised by gene copy number variations and overexpression of genes leading to activation of the PI3K/Akt/mTOR pathway. Activation of p70S6K correlated with drug activity in the preclinical studies. Sirolimus was well tolerated in the clinic, showed predictable PKs, exerted pathway inhibition in post-treatment PBMCs and resulted in a 6mSR of 26%. No correlation, however, was found between activated p70S6K in tumour tissues and anti-tumour effects. Sirolimus activity in pancreatic cancer was marginal and not predicted by the selected biomarker.
    British Journal of Cancer 08/2010; 103(5):649-55. DOI:10.1038/sj.bjc.6605819 · 4.82 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

9k Citations
1,500.80 Total Impact Points

Institutions

  • 1984–2015
    • Johns Hopkins Medicine
      • • Department of Medical Oncology
      • • Department of Surgery
      • • Department of Gynecology & Obstetrics
      Baltimore, Maryland, United States
  • 1989–2013
    • Johns Hopkins University
      • • Department of Surgery
      • • Department of Pharmacology and Molecular Sciences
      Baltimore, Maryland, United States
  • 2007
    • University of Michigan
      • Department of Neurology
      Ann Arbor, MI, United States
  • 2006–2007
    • Wayne State University
      Detroit, Michigan, United States
  • 2004
    • Mary Crowley Medical Research Center
      Dallas, Texas, United States
  • 2003
    • Erasmus MC
      • Department of Internal Oncology
      Rotterdam, South Holland, Netherlands
  • 1996
    • Mayo Clinic - Rochester
      Rochester, Minnesota, United States
    • U.S. Food and Drug Administration
      • Center for Drug Evaluation and Research
      Washington, Washington, D.C., United States
  • 1993
    • French National Centre for Scientific Research
      Lutetia Parisorum, Île-de-France, France
    • National Cancer Institute (USA)
      베서스다, Maryland, United States