[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: A minority of early invasive breast cancers show a pattern of central necrosis and fibrosis (CNF). Previous studies have documented an adverse prognostic impact and association with other adverse pathological features, but its predictive importance for therapy selection is unknown. We examined the prognostic and predictive value of CNF in two randomized clinical trials comparing chemoendocrine therapy with endocrine therapy alone in patients with node-negative breast cancer. A total of 1,850 patients randomly assigned to treatment groups comparing endocrine with chemoendocrine therapy, and with centrally-assessed CNF, ER, PgR and HER2 were included in the analytic cohort. The median follow up was 10 years. CNF was present in 84 of 1,850 trial patients (4.5%). It was associated with tumor characteristics suggesting poor outcome, but was an independent adverse factor for disease-free survival. In the presence of CNF outcome was worse regardless of tumor grade, whereas in the absence of CNF, patients with grade 3 tumors had poorer outcome than those with grade 1-2 tumors. Among patients with estrogen receptor-absent tumors chemoendocrine therapy was superior to endocrine therapy alone only in the absence of CNF [HR (chemoendocrine:endocrine) = 0.46 in CNF-absent, 0.90 in CNF-present], while among those with receptor-positive disease chemoendocrine therapy was beneficial only in the presence of CNF [HR = 0.34 CNF-present, 0.96 CNF-absent]. The results suggest that the presence of CNF reflects a biological difference in early breast cancer that is important in modulating the efficacy of standard therapies. Accordingly we believe that its presence should be routinely reported.
Breast Cancer Research and Treatment 04/2009; 121(1):211-8. · 4.47 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To compare the efficacy of chemoendocrine treatment with that of endocrine treatment (ET) alone for postmenopausal women with highly endocrine responsive breast cancer. In the International Breast Cancer Study Group (IBCSG) Trials VII and 12-93, postmenopausal women with node-positive, estrogen receptor (ER)-positive or ER-negative, operable breast cancer were randomized to receive either chemotherapy or endocrine therapy or combined chemoendocrine treatment. Results were analyzed overall in the cohort of 893 patients with endocrine-responsive disease, and according to prospectively defined categories of ER, age and nodal status. STEPP analyses assessed chemotherapy effect. The median follow-up was 13 years. Adding chemotherapy reduced the relative risk of a disease-free survival event by 19% (P = 0.02) compared with ET alone. STEPP analyses showed little effect of chemotherapy for tumors with high levels of ER expression (P = 0.07), or for the cohort with one positive node (P = 0.03). Chemotherapy significantly improves disease-free survival for postmenopausal women with endocrine-responsive breast cancer, but the magnitude of the effect is substantially attenuated if ER levels are high.
Breast Cancer Research and Treatment 11/2008; 116(3):491-500. · 4.47 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: International Breast Cancer Study Group (IBCSG) Trial 11-93 is the largest trial evaluating the role of the addition of chemotherapy to ovarian function suppression/ablation (OFS) and tamoxifen in premenopausal patients with endocrine-responsive early breast cancer.
IBCSG Trial 11-93 is a randomized trial comparing four cycles of adjuvant chemotherapy (AC: doxorubicin or epirubicin, plus cyclophosphamide) added to OFS and 5 years of tamoxifen versus OFS and tamoxifen without chemotherapy in premenopausal patients with node-positive, endocrine-responsive early breast cancer. There were 174 patients randomized from May 1993 to November 1998. The trial was closed before the target accrual was reached due to low accrual rate.
Patients randomized tended to have lower risk node-positive disease and the median age was 45. After 10 years median follow up, there remains no difference between the two randomized treatment groups for disease-free (hazard ratio=1.02 (0.57-1.83); P=0.94) or overall survival (hazard ratio=0.97 (0.44-2.16); P=0.94).
This trial, although small, offers no evidence that AC chemotherapy provides additional disease control for premenopausal patients with lower-risk node-positive endocrine-responsive breast cancer who receive adequate adjuvant endocrine therapy. A large trial is needed to determine whether chemotherapy adds benefit to endocrine therapy for this population.
Breast Cancer Research and Treatment 03/2008; 113(1):137-44. · 4.47 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Cancer presenting at the medial site of the breast may have a worse prognosis compared with tumors located in external quadrants. For medial tumors, axillary lymph node staging may not accurately reflect the metastatic potential of the disease.
Eight-thousand four-hundred twenty-two patients randomly assigned to International Breast Cancer Study Group clinical trials between 1978 and 1999 were classified as medial site (1,622; 19%) or lateral, central, and other sites (6,800; 81%). Median follow-up was 11 years.
A statistically significant difference was observed for patients with medial tumors versus those with nonmedial tumors in disease-free survival (DFS; 10-year DFS, 46% v 48%; HR, 1.10; 95% CI, 1.02 to 1.18; P = .01) and overall survival (10-year OS 59% v 61%; HR, 1.09; 1.01 to 1.19; P = .04). This difference increased after adjustment for other prognostic factors (HR, 1.22; 95% CI, 1.13 to 1.32 for DFS; and HR, 1.24; 95% CI, 1.14 to 1.35 for OS; both P = .0001). The risk of relapse for patients with medial presentation was largest for the node-negative cohort and for patients with tumors larger than 2 cm. In the subgroup of 2,931 patients with negative axillary lymph nodes, 10-year DFS was 61% v 67%, and OS was 73% v 80% for medial versus nonmedial sites, respectively (HR 1.33; 95% CI, 1.15 to 1.54; P = .0001 for DFS; and HR 1.40; 95% CI, 1.17 to 1.67; P = .0003 for OS).
Tumor site has a significant prognostic utility, especially for axillary lymph node-negative disease, that should be considered in therapeutic algorithms. New staging procedures such as biopsy of the sentinel internal mammary nodes or novel imaging methods should be further studied in patients with medial tumors.
Journal of Clinical Oncology 04/2005; 23(7):1390-400. · 18.04 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Toremifene is a chlorinated derivative of tamoxifen, developed to improve its risk-benefit profile. The International Breast Cancer Study Group (IBCSG) conducted two complementary randomized trials for peri- and postmenopausal patients with node-positive breast cancer to compare toremifene versus tamoxifen as the endocrine agent and simultaneously investigate a chemotherapy-oriented question. This is the first report of the endocrine comparison after a median follow-up of 5.5 years.
1035 patients were available for analysis: 75% had estrogen receptor (ER)-positive primary tumors, the median number of involved axillary lymph nodes was three and 81% received prior adjuvant chemotherapy.
Toremifene and tamoxifen yielded similar disease-free (DFS) and overall survival (OS): 5-year DFS rates of 72% and 69%, respectively [risk ratio (RR)=0.95; 95% confidence interval (CI)=0.76-1.18]; 5-year OS rates of 85% and 81%, respectively (RR = 1.03; 95% CI = 0.78-1.36). Similar outcomes were observed in the ER-positive cohort. Toxicities were similar in the two treatment groups with very few women (<1%) experiencing severe thromboembolic or cerebrovascular complications. Quality of life results were also similar. Nine patients developed early stage endometrial cancer (toremifene, six; tamoxifen, three).
Toremifene is a valid and safe alternative to tamoxifen in postmenopausal women with endocrine-responsive breast cancer.
Annals of Oncology 12/2004; 15(12):1749-59. · 7.38 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Increasing numbers of older women are affected by early breast cancer, because of prolonged life expectancy and the increasing incidence of breast cancer with age. The role of adjuvant therapy for this population is still a matter of debate. We reviewed the long-term outcome of a mature trial comparing endocrine treatment versus no adjuvant therapy in older women with node-positive breast cancer.
From 1978 to 1981, 349 women 66 to 80 years of age with pathologically involved lymph nodes after total mastectomy and axillary clearance were randomly assigned to receive 12 months of adjuvant tamoxifen plus low-dose prednisone (p+T) or no adjuvant therapy. Three hundred twenty patients were eligible.
At 21 years' median follow-up, 1 year of p+T significantly prolonged disease-free survival (DFS; P =.003) and overall survival (P =.05; 15-year DFS, 10% +/- 3% v 19% +/- 3%; hazard ratio, 0.71; 95% CI, 0.58 to 0.86). When comparing competing causes of failure (breast cancer recurrence and deaths before breast cancer recurrence), p+T was far superior in controlling breast cancer recurrence (P =.0003), but the improvement was seen mainly in soft tissue sites. Conversely, patients in the p+T group were more likely to die before a breast cancer recurrence (P =.03).
This trial demonstrates that significant treatment benefits continue to be observed in older patients treated for 1 year with p+T. Despite issues relating to competing causes of failure, older breast cancer patients can benefit from treatment and should be considered for trials of adjuvant systemic therapy.
Journal of Clinical Oncology 01/2004; 21(24):4517-23. · 18.04 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The objective of this study was to clarify the prognostic and predictive value of immunoreactivity for the cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor p27(Kip1) in patients with early-stage breast carcinoma and to investigate its relation with clinicopathologic features and other markers.
Immunoreactivity for p27 protein was analyzed on tumor slides from 461 patients who were enrolled in the International Breast Cancer Study Group (IBCSG) Trial V (median follow-up, 13 years), including 198 patients with lymph node negative disease and 263 patients with lymph node positive disease. Tumors with < 50% immunoreactive neoplastic cells were considered low expressors. Immunoreactivity for p27 was correlated with several clinicopathologic characteristics. Disease free survival (DFS) and overall survival were analyzed according to p27 immunoreactivity and treatment group.
In the lymph node negative population, decreased p27 immunoreactivity was associated with higher tumor grade (P = 0.001) and HER-2/neu overexpression (P = 0.04). In the lymph node positive population, low p27 expression was associated with higher tumor grade (P = 0.01), low expression of thymidylate synthase (P = 0.001), and higher Ki-67 expression (P = 0.007). DFS was not significantly different according to p27 status in either lymph node negative patients (10-year DFS: low p27 expression, 53% +/- 5%; high p27 expression, 55% +/- 5%) or in lymph node positive patients (10 year DFS: low p27 expression, 33% +/- 4%; high p27 expression, 32% +/- 4%). However, in the lymph node negative population, the benefit of one course of perioperative chemotherapy with cyclophosphamide, methotrexate, and 5-fluorouracil was confined exclusively to patients with tumors that showed reduced p27 immunoreactivity (P = 0.03; test for interaction).
This analysis indicates that p27 immunoreactivity has little if any prognostic value in patients with early-stage breast carcinoma. However, these findings suggest that, in patients with breast carcinoma who have negative lymph node status, reduced p27 immunoreactivity is associated with HER-2/neu overexpression and may be predictive of a benefit from the early administration of adjuvant chemotherapy.
Cancer 04/2003; 97(7):1591-600. · 5.20 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The number of mitoses and, thus, the proliferative capacity of a tumor is one of the most crucial variables for tumor grading. The Ki-67 nuclear antigen may be considered as an alternative to mitotic counts in grading schemes and as a single parameter that can be used in fine-needle aspirates and small biopsies.
Immunohistochemistry using the anti-Ki-67 antibody MIB-1 was performed on 434 breast carcinoma specimens from the International Breast Cancer Study Group (formerly Ludwig) Trial V. Three groups based on Ki-67 percent were used to replace the mitotic counts component in the Nottingham grade (NHG) to produce the Nottingham/Ki-67 grade (NKG) and to assess Ki-67 as a single parameter.
In both the lymph node positive subgroup and the lymph node negative subgroup, the NKG and Ki-67 group was correlated significantly with Bloom-Richardson grade (BRG), NHG, and Nottingham type. Tumor size in the lymph node negative cohort and estrogen receptor status, progesterone receptor status, and c-erbB-2 expression in the lymph node positive cohort also were correlated significantly with NKG. Ki-67 percentage was correlated significantly with c-erbB-2 expression in the lymph node positive cohort only. NKG was similar to BRG and NHG when it was evaluated for prognostic significance. Patients with higher categoric Ki-67 percentages had worse overall and disease free survival in all groups except for the untreated, lymph node negative group.
Ki-67 detection represents a valuable tool and is a good objective substitute for mitotic counts when used in a grading system. When it is used alone, Ki-67 detection provides valuable information, although it is necessary to combine this with other parameters in the study of core biopsies and fine-needle aspirates.
Cancer 04/2003; 97(5):1321-31. · 5.20 Impact Factor