Donald P Lawrence

Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, New York, New York, United States

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Publications (46)604.99 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Purpose: To report the overall survival (OS) and clinical characteristics of BRAF inhibitor-naive long-term responders and survivors treated with dabrafenib plus trametinib in a phase I and II study of patients with BRAF V600 mutation-positive metastatic melanoma. Methods: BRAF inhibitor-naive patients treated with dabrafenib 150 mg twice daily plus trametinib 2 mg daily (the 150/2 group) from the non-randomly assigned (part B) and randomly assigned (part C) cohorts of the study were analyzed for progression-free and OS separately. Baseline characteristics and factors on treatment were analyzed for associations with durable responses and OS. Results: For BRAF inhibitor-naive patients in the 150/2 groups (n = 78), the progression-free survival at 1, 2, and 3 years was 44%, 22%, and 18%, respectively, for part B (n = 24) and 41%, 25%, and 21%, respectively, for part C (n = 54). Median OS was 27.4 months in part B and 25 months in part C. OS at 1, 2, and 3 years was 72%, 60%, and 47%, respectively, for part B and 80%, 51%, and 38%, respectively, for part C. Prolonged survival was associated with metastases in fewer than three organ sites and lower baseline lactate dehydrogenase. OS at 3 years was 62% in patients with normal baseline lactate dehydrogenase and 63% in patients with a complete response. Conclusion: Dabrafenib plus trametinib results in a median OS of more than 2 years in BRAF inhibitor-naive patients with BRAF V600 mutation-positive metastatic melanoma, and approximately 20% were progression free at 3 years. Durable responses occurred in patients with good prognostic features at baseline, which may be predictive.
    No preview · Article · Jan 2016 · Journal of Clinical Oncology
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    ABSTRACT: Importance Ipilimumab and other immune therapies are effective treatment options for patients with advanced melanoma but cause frequent immune-related toxic effects. Autoimmune diseases are common, and the safety and efficacy of ipilimumab therapy in patients with preexisting autoimmune disorders is not known.Objective To determine the safety and efficacy of ipilimumab therapy in patients with advanced melanoma with preexisting autoimmune disorders.Design, Setting, and Participants Retrospective review of patients with advanced melanoma and preexisting autoimmune disorders who received ipilimumab at 9 academic tertiary referral centers from January 1, 2012, through August 1, 2015. The data analysis was performed on August 24, 2015.Exposure Ipilimumab therapy.Main Outcomes and Measures Safety, in terms of frequency of autoimmune flares and conventional immune-related adverse events (irAEs), and efficacy, in terms of response rates and overall survival, were evaluated descriptively.Results Of the 30 patients who received ipilimumab (17 [57%] male; median [range] age, 59.5 [30-80] y), 6 had rheumatoid arthritis, 5 had psoriasis, 6 had inflammatory bowel disease, 2 had systemic lupus erythematosus, 2 had multiple sclerosis, 2 had autoimmune thyroiditis, and 7 had other conditions. Thirteen patients (43%) were receiving immunosuppressive therapy at the time of initiation of ipilimumab therapy, most commonly low-dose prednisone or hydroxychloroquine. With ipilimumab treatment, 8 patients (27%) experienced exacerbations of their autoimmune condition necessitating systemic treatment; all were managed with corticosteroids. Conventional grade 3 to 5 irAEs occurred in 10 patients (33%) and were reversible with corticosteroids or with infliximab therapy in 2 cases. One patient with baseline psoriasis died of presumed immune-related colitis after a 1-week delay prior to reporting symptoms. Fifteen patients (50%) had neither autoimmune disease flares nor irAEs. Six patients experienced an objective response (20%), including 1 with a durable complete response.Conclusions and Relevance To our knowledge, this is the largest series of patients with preexisting autoimmune disease treated with immune checkpoint inhibitors. Ipilimumab was clinically active and was associated with exacerbations of autoimmune disease and conventional ipilimumab-induced irAEs that were readily manageable with standard therapies when started in a timely fashion. Ipilimumab therapy may be considered in this setting with vigilant clinical monitoring.
    No preview · Article · Dec 2015
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    ABSTRACT: A newer generation of anti-cancer drugs targeting underlying somatic genetic driver events have resulted in high single-agent or single-pathway response rates in selected patients, but few patients achieve complete responses and a sizeable fraction of patients relapse within a year. Thus, there is a pressing need for identification of combinations of targeted agents which induce more complete responses and prevent disease progression. We describe the results of a combination screen of an unprecedented scale in mammalian cells performed using a collection of targeted, clinically tractable agents across a large panel of melanoma cell lines. We find that even the most synergistic drug pairs are effective only in a discrete number of cell lines, underlying a strong context dependency for synergy, with strong, widespread synergies often corresponding to non-specific or off-target drug effects such as multidrug resistance protein 1 (MDR1) transporter inhibition. We identified drugs sensitizing cell lines that are BRAFV600E mutant but intrinsically resistant to BRAF inhibitor PLX4720, including the vascular endothelial growth factor receptor/kinase insert domain receptor (VEGFR/KDR) and platelet derived growth factor receptor (PDGFR) family inhibitor cediranib. The combination of cediranib and PLX4720 induced apoptosis in vitro and tumor regression in animal models. This synergistic interaction is likely due to engagement of multiple receptor tyrosine kinases (RTKs), demonstrating the potential of drug- rather than gene-specific combination discovery approaches. Patients with elevated biopsy KDR expression showed decreased progression free survival in trials of mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) kinase pathway inhibitors. Thus, high-throughput unbiased screening of targeted drug combinations, with appropriate library selection and mechanistic follow-up, can yield clinically-actionable drug combinations.
    Preview · Article · Oct 2015 · PLoS ONE
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    ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND Patients with mucosal and acral melanomas have limited treatment options and a poor prognosis. Mutations of the KIT oncogene in these melanoma subtypes provide a potential therapeutic target.METHODSA multicenter phase 2 trial of sunitinib was conducted in patients with unresectable stage III or IV melanoma of a mucosal or acral primary origin. Patients were treated in 2 cohorts: cohort A received sunitinib at a dose of 50 mg daily for 4 weeks of a 6-week cycle, and cohort B received sunitinib at a dose of 37.5 mg daily on a continuous basis. Dose reductions were permitted for treatment-related toxicities, and tumor assessments were performed every 2 months.RESULTSFifty-two patients were enrolled: 21 in cohort A and 31 in cohort B. Four patients had confirmed partial responses, which lasted 5 to 10 months (1 with a KIT mutation). In both cohorts, the proportion of patients alive and progression-free at 2 months was 52% (95% confidence interval, 38%-66%); this was significantly larger than the hypothesized null of 5%. There was no significant difference in response or overall survival between the 25% of patients with a KIT mutation and those without one (response rate, 7.7% vs 9.7%; overall survival, 6.4 vs 8.6 months). The overall disease control rate was 44%, and a high rate of toxicity was associated with the treatment.CONCLUSIONS Sunitinib showed activity in the treatment of mucosal and acral melanoma that was not dependent on the presence of a KIT mutation. However, the medication was poorly tolerated, and there were no prolonged responses. Cancer 2015. © 2015 American Cancer Society.
    No preview · Article · Aug 2015 · Cancer
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    ABSTRACT: This study is a rare example of effective doses of both targeted agents being both administered and tolerated.This combination should not be used in melanoma. Sorafenib and bortezomib affect BCL family member expression. We previously demonstrated that bortezomib augmented sorafenib-mediated cytotoxicity in melanoma cell lines in vitro. We aimed to combine sorafenib 400 mg b.i.d. with increasing doses of weekly bortezomib. Patients with metastatic melanoma were enrolled in dose-escalation cohorts to determine the maximum tolerated dose (MTD) of sorafenib (twice daily) in combination with bortezomib (weekly for 3 of 4 weeks). The MTD was defined as the highest dose level at which less than 33% of patients exhibited a dose-limiting toxicity (DLT). Efficacy, as measured by 6-month progression-free survival and response rate per RECIST, was documented. Eleven patients were enrolled at three dose levels. DLTs (fatigue and rash) were seen in two of three patients at the highest dose level. Five patients were enrolled for sorafenib 400 mg b.i.d. and bortezomib 1.0 mg/m(2) weekly for 3 of every 4 weeks; none had DLTs, and this dose level was defined as the MTD. Of 10 evaluable patients, no responses were seen. Two of 11 patients (18%) remained progression free for longer than 6 months. The combination of sorafenib and bortezomib is safe but not active in patients with melanoma. ©AlphaMed Press; the data published online to support this summary is the property of the authors.
    Full-text · Article · May 2015 · The Oncologist
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    ABSTRACT: Survival with BRAF-mutant metastatic melanoma is prolonged with MAP-kinase pathway inhibitors (MAPKi). Among patients with brain metastases (BM), however, the clinical course of MAPKi-treated patients is not well described. We therefore explored these patients' survival patterns compared to contemporary patients not treated with MAPKi. We analyzed 106 patients who developed melanoma BM between 2007 and 2013. Of these, 37 (35 %) received de novo MAPKi for BRAF-mutant disease, which preceded BM in 49 %. Immunotherapy was given to 54 % of MAPKi-treated patients and 94 % of those who did not receive MAPKi. We evaluated the potential influence of patient characteristics, systemic therapies, and BM-directed treatments on time to appearance of new BM and overall survival. With a median follow-up of 8.0 months after initial BM, MAPKi use was an independent predictor of prolonged survival after BM diagnosis (median 14.1 vs 7.0 months, P = 0.03, adjusted hazard ratio 0.39). This survival advantage was driven by the 16.6-month median survival of patients who initiated MAPKi after BM were diagnosed, versus 5.6 months if initiated prior to BM development (P = 0.03). Median survival from the onset of any systemic metastases was 22 months regardless of the timing of MAPKi relative to BM appearance. Time to in-brain progression was longer among patients whose MAPKi course was started after BM diagnosis, but MAPKi initiation prior to BM diagnosis was associated with longer time to intracranial involvement. These findings are consistent with potential MAPKi activity in intracranial melanoma.
    No preview · Article · Apr 2015 · Journal of Neuro-Oncology
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    ABSTRACT: A practice gap exists in the surgical removal of sentinel lymph nodes, from removal of only the most radioactive (hottest) lymph node to removal of all lymph nodes with radioactivity greater than 10% of the hottest lymph node. To determine the clinical significance of melanoma in sentinel lymph nodes that are not the hottest sentinel node and to determine the risk for disease progression based on sentinel lymph node status and primary tumor characteristics. Consecutive patients with cutaneous melanoma with sentinel lymph nodes resected from January 5, 2004, to June 30, 2008, with a mean follow-up of 59 months, at Massachusetts General Hospital were included in this retrospective review. The last year of follow-up was 2012. The operative protocol led to resection of all sentinel lymph nodes with radioactivity greater than 10% of the hottest lymph node. The number of lymph nodes removed, technetium-99m counts for each sentinel lymph node, presence or absence of sentinel lymph node metastases, primary tumor characteristics, disease progression, and melanoma-specific survival were recorded. Microscopic melanoma metastases in the hottest and nonhottest sentinel lymph nodes and factors that correlate with disease progression and mortality. A total of 1575 sentinel lymph nodes were analyzed in 475 patients. Ninety-one patients (19%) had positive sentinel lymph nodes. Of these, 72 (79%) had metastases in the hottest sentinel lymph node. Of 19 cases with tumor present, but not in the hottest sentinel lymph node, counts ranged from 26% to 97% of the hottest node. Progression occurred in 43% of patients with sentinel node metastasis, regardless of whether the hottest lymph node was positive. In patients with negative sentinel lymph nodes, 11% developed metastases beyond the sentinel lymph node basin and 3.4% recurred in the basin. Mitogenicity of the primary tumor was associated with mortality (odds ratio, 2.435; 95% CI, 1.351-4.391; P < .001). Removing only the hottest sentinel lymph node would have led to false-negative results in 19 of 475 (4%) of all patients and 19 of 91 patients (21%) with positive sentinel lymph nodes. The 8-year survival in patients with at least 1 positive sentinel lymph node was less than 55%. The presence of more than 1 mitosis per square millimeter in the primary cutaneous melanoma was associated with decreased survival. Microscopic melanoma metastases was associated with disease progression and mortality, whether present in the hottest sentinel lymph node or not. These observations emphasize the importance of removing the less hot nodes, addressing a practice gap in the surgical approach to patients with melanoma.
    No preview · Article · Apr 2015 · JAMA SURGERY
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    ABSTRACT: Purpose: Although durable responses can be achieved with tyrosine kinase inhibitors such as imatinib in melanomas harboring KIT mutations, the efficacy of alternative inhibitors after progression to imatinib and the activity of these agents on brain metastases is unknown. Experimental Design: We conducted a phase II study of nilotinib 400 mg BID in two cohorts of patients with melanomas harboring KIT mutations or amplification: A) those refractory or intolerant to a prior KIT inhibitor; and B) those with brain metastases. The primary endpoint was 4-month disease control rate. Secondary endpoints included response rate, time-to-progression and overall survival. A Simon two-stage and a single-stage design was planned to assess for the primary endpoint in Cohorts A and B, respectively. Results: Twenty patients were enrolled and 19 treated (11-Cohort A; 8-Cohort B). Three patients on Cohort A (27%; 95% CI, 8% - 56%) and 1 on Cohort B (12.5%; 90% CI, 0.6% - 47%) achieved the primary endpoint. Two partial responses were observed in Cohort A (18.2%, 90% CI, 3% - 47%); none were observed in Cohort B. The median time-to-progression and overall survival was 3·3 (90% CI, 2.1 - 3.9 months) and 9.1 months (90% CI, 4.3 - 14.2 months), respectively, in all treated patients. Conclusion: Nilotinib may achieve disease control in patients with melanoma harboring KIT alterations and whose disease progressed after imatinib therapy. The efficacy of this agent in KIT altered melanoma with brain metastasis is limited. Copyright © 2015, American Association for Cancer Research.
    Full-text · Article · Feb 2015 · Clinical Cancer Research
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    ABSTRACT: Fresolimumab is an antibody capable of neutralizing all human isoforms of transforming growth factor beta (TGFβ) and has demonstrated anticancer activity in investigational studies. Inhibition of TGFβ by fresolimumab can potentially result in the development of cutaneous lesions. The aim of this study was to investigate the clinical, histological, and immunohistochemical characteristics of cutaneous neoplasms associated with fresolimumab. Skin biopsies (n = 24) were collected and analyzed from patients (n = 5) with treatment-emergent, cutaneous lesions arising during a phase 1 study of multiple doses of fresolimumab in patients (n = 29) with melanoma or renal cell carcinoma. Blinded, independent histological review and measurements of Ki-67, p53, and HPV integration were performed. Based on central review, four patients developed lesions with histological characteristics of keratoacanthomas, and of these patients, a single case of well-differentiated squamous cell carcinoma was also found. Expression of Ki-67, no evidence of p53 overexpression, and only focal positivity for human papillomavirus RNA by in situ hybridization in 4/18 cases were consistent with these findings. Following completion of fresolimumab, lesions spontaneously resolved. Therefore, benign, reversible keratoacanthomas were the most common cutaneous neoplasms observed, a finding of importance for adverse event monitoring, patient care, and optimization of therapies targeting TGFβ.
    No preview · Article · Jan 2015 · Cancer Immunology and Immunotherapy
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    ABSTRACT: The development of human cancer is a multistep process characterized by the accumulation of genetic and epigenetic alterations that drive or reflect tumour progression. These changes distinguish cancer cells from their normal counterparts, allowing tumours to be recognized as foreign by the immune system. However, tumours are rarely rejected spontaneously, reflecting their ability to maintain an immunosuppressive microenvironment. Programmed death-ligand 1 (PD-L1; also called B7-H1 or CD274), which is expressed on many cancer and immune cells, plays an important part in blocking the 'cancer immunity cycle' by binding programmed death-1 (PD-1) and B7.1 (CD80), both of which are negative regulators of T-lymphocyte activation. Binding of PD-L1 to its receptors suppresses T-cell migration, proliferation and secretion of cytotoxic mediators, and restricts tumour cell killing. The PD-L1-PD-1 axis protects the host from overactive T-effector cells not only in cancer but also during microbial infections. Blocking PD-L1 should therefore enhance anticancer immunity, but little is known about predictive factors of efficacy. This study was designed to evaluate the safety, activity and biomarkers of PD-L1 inhibition using the engineered humanized antibody MPDL3280A. Here we show that across multiple cancer types, responses (as evaluated by Response Evaluation Criteria in Solid Tumours, version 1.1) were observed in patients with tumours expressing high levels of PD-L1, especially when PD-L1 was expressed by tumour-infiltrating immune cells. Furthermore, responses were associated with T-helper type 1 (TH1) gene expression, CTLA4 expression and the absence of fractalkine (CX3CL1) in baseline tumour specimens. Together, these data suggest that MPDL3280A is most effective in patients in which pre-existing immunity is suppressed by PD-L1, and is re-invigorated on antibody treatment.
    No preview · Article · Nov 2014 · Nature

  • No preview · Conference Paper · Nov 2014
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    ABSTRACT: BRAF inhibitors (BRAFi) have led to clinical benefit in patients with melanoma. The development of a blood-based assay to detect and quantify BRAF levels in these patients has diagnostic, prognostic, and predictive capabilities that could guide treatment decisions. Blood BRAFV600E detection and quantification was performed on samples from 128 patients with Stage II (19), III (67), and IV (42) melanoma. Tissue BRAF analysis was performed in all patients with Stage IV disease and in selected patients with Stage II and III disease. Clinical outcomes were correlated to initial BRAF levels as well as BRAF level dynamics. Serial analysis was performed on 17 Stage IV melanoma patients treated with BRAFi and compared to tumor measurements by RECIST. The assay was highly sensitive (96%) and specific (95%) in the Stage IV setting, using a blood level of 4.8 pg as "positive". BRAF levels typically decreased following BRAFi. A subset of these patients (5) had an increase in BRAF V600E values 42-112 days prior to clinical or radiographic disease progression (PD). From 86 patients with resected, stage II or III melanoma, 39 had evidence of disease relapse (45.3 %). Furthermore, BRAF mutation in the blood after surgical resection in these patients was not associated with a difference in relapse risk, though tissue BRAF status was only available for a subset of patients. In summary we have developed a highly sensitive and specific, blood-based assay to detect BRAFV600 mutation in patients with melanoma.
    No preview · Article · Oct 2014 · Molecular Cancer Therapeutics
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    ABSTRACT: Purpose: Preclinical and early clinical studies have demonstrated that initial therapy with combined BRAF and MEK inhibition is more effective in BRAF(V600)-mutant melanoma than single-agent BRAF inhibitors. This study assessed the safety and efficacy of dabrafenib and trametinib in patients who had received prior BRAF inhibitor treatment. Patients and methods: In this open-label phase I/II study, we evaluated the pharmacology, safety, and efficacy of dabrafenib and trametinib. Here, we report patients treated with combination therapy after disease progression with BRAF inhibitor treatment administered before study enrollment (part B; n = 26) or after cross-over at progression with dabrafenib monotherapy (part C; n = 45). Results: In parts B and C, confirmed objective response rates (ORR) were 15% (95% CI, 4% to 35%) and 13% (95% CI, 5% to 27%), respectively; an additional 50% and 44% experienced stable disease ≥ 8 weeks, respectively. In part C, median progression-free survival (PFS) was 3.6 months (95% CI, 2 to 4), and median overall survival was 11.8 months (95% CI, 8 to 25) from cross-over. Patients who previously received dabrafenib ≥ 6 months had superior outcomes with the combination compared with those treated < 6 months; median PFS was 3.9 (95% CI, 3 to 7) versus 1.8 months (95% CI, 2 to 4; hazard ratio, 0.49; P = .02), and ORR was 26% (95% CI, 10% to 48%) versus 0% (95% CI, 0% to 15%). Conclusion: Dabrafenib plus trametinib has modest clinical efficacy in patients with BRAF inhibitor-resistant melanoma. This regimen may be a therapeutic strategy for patients who previously benefited from BRAF inhibitor monotherapy ≥ 6 months but demonstrates minimal efficacy after rapid progression with BRAF inhibitor therapy.
    Preview · Article · Oct 2014 · Journal of Clinical Oncology
  • F. S. Hodi · D. Lawrence · C. Lezcano · X. Wu · J. Zhou · T. Sasada

    No preview · Article · Sep 2014
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    ABSTRACT: Context: Ipilimumab (Ipi) is approved by the FDA for treatment of unresectable or metastatic melanoma. Little is known about ipilimumab-induced hypophysitis (IH), an important treatment complication. Objective: To (i) examine the prevalence of IH, (ii) characterize the clinical course and treatment outcomes in IH, (iii) identify risk factors for the development of IH, and (iv) determine optimal strategies for the management of IH. Design: Retrospective review Setting: Tertiary referral center Subjects: 154 adult patients with metastatic melanoma evaluated at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) and treated with Ipi between March 2008 and December 2013. Intervention(s): Treatment with Ipi Main Outcome Measure(s): Pituitary magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), pituitary hormone assessment, patient survival. Results: IH was diagnosed in 17 patients (11%). Male gender (p = 0.02) and older age (p = 0.005), but not the cumulative dose of Ipi, were risk factors for IH. All patients with IH had anterior hypopituitarism (none had diabetes insipidus). Hypopituitarism was persistent in most individuals (76%). Diffuse pituitary enlargement was observed exclusively in all cases of IH and, upon retrospective review of MRI's, this finding preceded the clinical diagnosis of hypophysitis in 8 patients. Pituitary enlargement resolved rapidly (within 40 days in 7/7 patients). Median survival in patients with IH was 19.4 vs 8.8 months (p = 0.05) in the remainder of the cohort. Conclusions: Male gender and older age are risk factors for IH. Pituitary enlargement is sensitive and specific for IH in the appropriate setting, can precede the clinical diagnosis, and resolves rapidly. Anterior pituitary function recovery is uncommon. The incidence of hypophysitis may positively predict survival in melanoma patients treated with Ipi.
    No preview · Article · Jul 2014 · Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism
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    ABSTRACT: The immunotherapy (IT) agents ipilimumab and interleukin-2 as well as BRAF inhibitors (BRAFi) vemurafenib and dabrafenib, with or without trametinib (MEK inhibitors), are all FDA-approved treatments for BRAF metastatic melanoma, but there are few studies to guide optimal sequencing. This retrospective analysis describes the outcomes of patients treated with either BRAFi before IT or IT before BRAFi. A cohort of patients treated with BRAFi alone or with MEK inhibitor was retrospectively identified. Response rate (RR), overall survival (OS), and progression-free survival (PFS) were evaluated for the entire cohort, subdivided by BRAFi prior to or after IT. RR and median PFS and OS calculated from commencement of BRAFi following IT (N = 32) were 57%, 6.7 months (95% confidence interval [CI] = 4.3-9.1 months), and 19.6 months (95% CI = 10.0-undefined months), respectively; whereas for BRAFi initially (N = 242) were 66%, 5.6 months (95% CI = 4.7-6.8 months), and 13.4 months (95% CI = 10.1-17.0 months). Results were similar when controlled for prognostic variables. A total of 193 patients discontinued BRAFi, with OS of 2.9 months (range of 1.8-4.4 months) from day of BRAFi discontinuation. Forty patients subsequently received IT with ipilimumab. Only half could complete 4 doses of ipilimumab; PFS with ipilimumab was 2.7 months (95% CI = 1.8-3.1 months) and OS was 5.0 months (95% CI = 3.0-8.8 months). In this retrospective analysis, prior treatment with IT does not appear to negatively influence response to BRAFi. Outcomes for IT with ipilimumab following BRAFi discontinuation are poor. Randomized controlled trials are needed to define if sequencing IT prior to BRAFi therapy is superior to sequencing BRAFi prior to IT. Cancer 2014. © 2014 American Cancer Society.
    No preview · Article · Jun 2014 · Cancer
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    ABSTRACT: Ipilimumab improves survival in advanced melanoma and can induce immune-mediated tumor vasculopathy. Besides promoting angiogenesis, vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) suppresses dendritic cell maturation and modulates lymphocyte endothelial trafficking. This study investigated the combination of CTLA4 blockade with ipilimumab and VEGF inhibition with bevacizumab. Patients with metastatic melanoma were treated in four dosing cohorts of ipilimumab (3 or 10 mg/kg) with four doses at 3-week intervals and then every 12 weeks, and bevacizumab (7.5 or 15 mg/kg) every 3 weeks. Forty-six patients were treated. Inflammatory events included giant cell arteritis (n = 1), hepatitis (n = 2), and uveitis (n = 2). On-treatment tumor biopsies revealed activated vessel endothelium with extensive CD8(+) and macrophage cell infiltration. Peripheral blood analyses demonstrated increases in CCR7(+/-)/CD45RO(+) cells and anti-galectin antibodies. Best overall response included 8 partial responses, 22 instances of stable disease, and a disease-control rate of 67.4%. Median survival was 25.1 months. Bevacizumab influences changes in tumor vasculature and immune responses with ipilimumab administration. The combination of bevacizumab and ipilimumab can be safely administered and reveals VEGF-A blockade influences on inflammation, lymphocyte trafficking, and immune regulation. These findings provide a basis for further investigating the dual roles of angiogenic factors in blood vessel formation and immune regulation, as well as future combinations of antiangiogenesis agents and immune checkpoint blockade. Cancer Immunol Res; 2(7); 1-11. ©2014 AACR.
    Full-text · Article · Apr 2014
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    ABSTRACT: Melanoma is an invasive malignancy with a high frequency of blood-borne metastases, but circulating tumor cells (CTCs) have not been readily isolated. We adapted microfluidic CTC capture to a tamoxifen-driven B-RAF/PTEN mouse melanoma model. CTCs were detected in all tumor-bearing mice and rapidly declined after B-RAF inhibitor treatment. CTCs were shed early from localized tumors, and a short course of B-RAF inhibition following surgical resection was sufficient to dramatically suppress distant metastases. The large number of CTCs in melanoma-bearing mice enabled a comparison of RNA-sequencing profiles with matched primary tumors. A mouse melanoma CTC-derived signature correlated with invasiveness and cellular motility in human melanoma. CTCs were detected in smaller numbers in patients with metastatic melanoma and declined with successful B-RAF-targeted therapy. Together, the capture and molecular characterization of CTCs provide insight into the hematogenous spread of melanoma.
    Full-text · Article · Apr 2014 · Cell Reports
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    ABSTRACT: In advanced cancers, transforming growth factor-beta (TGFβ) promotes tumor growth and metastases and suppresses host antitumor immunity. GC1008 is a human anti-TGFβ monoclonal antibody that neutralizes all isoforms of TGFβ. Here, the safety and activity of GC1008 was evaluated in patients with advanced malignant melanoma and renal cell carcinoma. In this multi-center phase I trial, cohorts of patients with previously treated malignant melanoma or renal cell carcinoma received intravenous GC1008 at 0.1, 0.3, 1, 3, 10, or 15 mg/kg on days 0, 28, 42, and 56. Patients achieving at least stable disease were eligible to receive Extended Treatment consisting of 4 doses of GC1008 every 2 weeks for up to 2 additional courses. Pharmacokinetic and exploratory biomarker assessments were performed. Twenty-nine patients, 28 with malignant melanoma and 1 with renal cell carcinoma, were enrolled and treated, 22 in the dose-escalation part and 7 in a safety cohort expansion. No dose-limiting toxicity was observed, and the maximum dose, 15 mg/kg, was determined to be safe. The development of reversible cutaneous keratoacanthomas/squamous-cell carcinomas (4 patients) and hyperkeratosis was the major adverse event observed. One malignant melanoma patient achieved a partial response, and six had stable disease with a median progression-free survival of 24 weeks for these 7 patients (range, 16.4-44.4 weeks). GC1008 had no dose-limiting toxicity up to 15 mg/kg. In patients with advanced malignant melanoma and renal cell carcinoma, multiple doses of GC1008 demonstrated acceptable safety and preliminary evidence of antitumor activity, warranting further studies of single agent and combination treatments. Clinicaltrials.gov NCT00356460.
    Full-text · Article · Mar 2014 · PLoS ONE
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    ABSTRACT: Programmed cell death 1 (PD-1) is an inhibitory receptor expressed by activated T cells that downmodulates effector functions and limits the generation of immune memory. PD-1 blockade can mediate tumor regression in a substantial proportion of patients with melanoma, but it is not known whether this is associated with extended survival or maintenance of response after treatment is discontinued. Patients with advanced melanoma (N = 107) enrolled between 2008 and 2012 received intravenous nivolumab in an outpatient setting every 2 weeks for up to 96 weeks and were observed for overall survival, long-term safety, and response duration after treatment discontinuation. Median overall survival in nivolumab-treated patients (62% with two to five prior systemic therapies) was 16.8 months, and 1- and 2-year survival rates were 62% and 43%, respectively. Among 33 patients with objective tumor regressions (31%), the Kaplan-Meier estimated median response duration was 2 years. Seventeen patients discontinued therapy for reasons other than disease progression, and 12 (71%) of 17 maintained responses off-therapy for at least 16 weeks (range, 16 to 56+ weeks). Objective response and toxicity rates were similar to those reported previously; in an extended analysis of all 306 patients treated on this trial (including those with other cancer types), exposure-adjusted toxicity rates were not cumulative. Overall survival following nivolumab treatment in patients with advanced treatment-refractory melanoma compares favorably with that in literature studies of similar patient populations. Responses were durable and persisted after drug discontinuation. Long-term safety was acceptable. Ongoing randomized clinical trials will further assess the impact of nivolumab therapy on overall survival in patients with metastatic melanoma.
    Full-text · Article · Mar 2014 · Journal of Clinical Oncology

Publication Stats

3k Citations
604.99 Total Impact Points

Institutions

  • 2015
    • Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center
      • Department of Medicine
      New York, New York, United States
  • 2010-2015
    • Harvard University
      Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States
  • 2009-2015
    • Massachusetts General Hospital
      Boston, Massachusetts, United States
  • 2014
    • Harvard Medical School
      Boston, Massachusetts, United States