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Dynamic monitoring of HER2 amplification in circulating DNA of patients with metastatic colorectal cancer treated with cetuximab

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ARTICLE DOWNLOAD

Dynamic monitoring of HER2 amplification in circulating DNA of patients with metastatic colorectal cancer treated with cetuximab

10$

R. Liu, X. Zhao, W. Guo, M. Huang, L. Qiu, W. Zhang, Z. Zhang, W. Li, X. Zhu & Z. Chen 

Abstract

Purpose

Cetuximab (CTX) has been used to treat metastatic colorectal cancer (mCRC) with wild-type (wt) RAS and BRAF genes. Meanwhile HER2 amplification reportedly denoted CTX-resistant mCRC tumors. We investigated whether monitoring of HER2 amplification in circulating DNA allowed early detection of mCRC progression and CTX resistance.

Methods

We analyzed HER2 amplification in circulating DNA at 8-week intervals using ddPCR from 36 patients with RASwt/BRAFwt mCRC, who progressed after CTX treatments between July 2015 and January 2018.

Results

Of the 36 patients, 5 (13.9%) exhibited dynamic fluctuations of HER2 amplification in plasma in the course of CTX treatment, of whom 2 were positive for HER2 amplification in matched tumor specimens at baseline (per FISH). All 5 primary sites were left side: 3 rectums and 2 descending colon. HER2 ratio fluctuations in circulating DNA not only reflected changes in tumor volume, but their obvious increases presaged CT-documented progress by an average lead time of 2 months. Interestingly, progression-free survival did not significantly differ between these 5 patients and those without HER2 amplification (HR 1.06, 95% CI 0.40–2.77, P = 0.909).

Conclusion

Plasma HER2 amplification detected by ddPCR changed over time and predicted resistance to CTX, by an average lead time of 2 months. Further study is needed to validate our findings.

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Year 2020
Language English
Format PDF
DOI 10.1007/s12094-019-02215-7