Association of Broad-Based Genomic Sequencing With Survival Among Patients With Advanced Non–Small Cell Lung Cancer in the Community Oncology Setting

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Abstract

Importance

Broad-based genomic sequencing is being used more frequently for patients with advanced non–small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). However, little is known about the association between broad-based genomic sequencing and treatment selection or survival among patients with advanced NSCLC in a community oncology setting.

Objective

To compare clinical outcomes between patients with advanced NSCLC who received broad-based genomic sequencing vs a control group of patients who received routine testing for EGFR mutations and/or ALK rearrangements alone.

Design, Setting, and Participants

Retrospective cohort study of patients with chart-confirmed advanced NSCLC between January 1, 2011, and July 31, 2016, and who received care at 1 of 191 oncology practices across the United States using the Flatiron Health Database. Patients were diagnosed with stage IIIB/IV or unresectable nonsquamous NSCLC who received at least 1 line of antineoplastic treatment.

Exposures

Receipt of either broad-based genomic sequencing or routine testing (EGFR and/or ALK only). Broad-based genomic sequencing included any multigene panel sequencing assay examining more than 30 genes prior to third-line treatment.

Main Outcomes and Measures

Primary outcomes were 12-month mortality and overall survival from the start of first-line treatment. Secondary outcomes included frequency of genetic alterations and treatments received.

Results

Among 5688 individuals with advanced NSCLC (median age, 67 years [interquartile range, 41-85], 63.6% white, 80% with a history of smoking); 875 (15.4%) received broad-based genomic sequencing and 4813 (84.6%) received routine testing. Among patients who received broad-based genomic sequencing, 4.5% received targeted treatment based on testing results, 9.8% received routine EGFR/ALK targeted treatment, and 85.1% received no targeted treatment. Unadjusted mortality rates at 12 months were 49.2% for patients undergoing broad-based genomic sequencing and 35.9% for patients undergoing routine testing. Using an instrumental variable analysis, there was no significant association between broad-based genomic sequencing and 12-month mortality (predicted probability of death at 12 months, 41.1% for broad-based genomic sequencing vs 44.4% for routine testing; difference −3.6% [95% CI, −18.4% to 11.1%]; P = .63). The results were consistent in the propensity score–matched survival analysis (42.0% vs 45.1%; hazard ratio, 0.92 [95% CI, 0.73 to 1.11]; P = .40) vs unmatched cohort (hazard ratio, 0.69 [95% CI, 0.62 to 0.77]; log-rank P < .001).

Conclusions and Relevance

Among patients with advanced non–small cell lung cancer receiving care in the community oncology setting, broad-based genomic sequencing directly informed treatment in a minority of patients and was not independently associated with better survival.

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