Phase II Trial of Bevacizumab Plus Weekly Paclitaxel, Carboplatin, and Metronomic Cyclophosphamide With or Without Trastuzumab and Endocrine Therapy as Preoperative Treatment of Inflammatory Breast Cancer

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Abstract

Inflammatory breast cancer is a rare and highly aggressive disease. We investigated in a phase II study a neoadjuvant regimen with chemotherapy and an antiangiogenic strategy. The pathologic complete remission (pCR) rate was 29% and was significantly greater in patients with HER2+ tumors (57%). The achievement of a pCR was associated with longer disease-free and overall survival. The investigated regimen was effective and well tolerated. The antiangiogenic strategy warrants further studies in this setting.

Background:

Inflammatory breast cancer (IBC) is a rare and highly aggressive disease. A neoadjuvant regimen with chemotherapy and an antiangiogenic strategy was investigated.

Patients and Methods:

Patients with primary or recurrent IBC who were candidates for neoadjuvant treatment received weekly carboplatin and paclitaxel plus bevacizumab every 3 weeks and oral metronomic cyclophosphamide for 6 months. Trastuzumab was added for patients with HER2+ tumors and endocrine therapy was added for patients with estrogen receptor and/or progesterone receptor ≥ 10% tumors. Oral metronomic capecitabine and cyclophosphamide was continued for 6 months after surgery in those patients with a response. The primary efficacy endpoints were pathologic complete remission (pCR) and the objective response.

Results:

From July 2010 to December 2013, 34 patients with IBC were included. The surrogate intrinsic tumor subtypes were as follows: luminal B-like (HER2−), 10 (29%); luminal B-like (HER2+), 8 (24%); HER2+ (nonluminal), 6 (18%); and triple negative, 10 (29%). An objective response was obtained in 30 patients (88%; 95% confidence interval, 73%-97%) and a pCR in 10 patients (29%; 95% confidence interval, 15%-48%). The proportion of pCR was significantly greater in the patients with HER2+ tumors (57%) than in patients with triple-negative (20%) or luminal B-like (HER2−) tumors (0%; P = .019). After a median follow-up of 4.4 years, the 5-year disease-free survival and overall survival was 58% and 72%, respectively. The achievement of pCR was associated with longer disease-free (P = .12) and overall (P = .029) survival.

Conclusion:

In patients with IBC, neoadjuvant treatment with the investigated regimen was successful and well tolerated. Further studies evaluating the potential benefit of an antiangiogenic strategy in this setting are awaited.

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