Identification of Mutation Accumulation as Resistance Mechanism Emerging in First-Line Osimertinib Treatment

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Introduction:The survival of patients with EGFR mutation-positive lung cancer has dramatically improved since the introduction of EGFR tyrosine kinase inhibitors (EGFR-TKIs). Recently, osimertinib showed significantly prolonged progression-free survival than first-generation EGFR-TKI in first-line treatment, suggesting that a paradigm change that would move osimetinib to first-line treatment is indicated. We performed N-ethyl-N-nitrosourea (ENU) mutagenesis screening to uncover the resistant mechanism in first- and second-line osimertinib treatment.Methods:Ba/F3 cells harboring EGFR activating-mutation with or without secondary resistant mutation were exposed to ENU for 24 hours to introduce random mutations and selected with gefitinib, afatinib, or osimertinib. Mutations of emerging resistant cells were assessed.Results:The resistance of T790M and C797S to gefitinib and osimertinib, respectively, was prevalent in the mutagenesis screening with the Ba/F3 cells harboring activating-mutation alone. From C797S/activating-mutation expressing Ba/F3, the additional T790M was a major resistant mechanism in gefitinib and afatinib selection and the additional T854A and L792H were minor resistance mechanisms only in afatinib selection. However, the additional T854A or L792H mediated resistance to all classes of EGFR-TKI. Surprisingly, no resistant clone due to secondary mutation emerged from activating-mutation alone in the gefitinib + osimertinib selection.Conclusions:We showed the resistance mechanism to EGFR-TKI focusing on first- and second-line osimertinib using ENU mutagenesis screening. Additional T854A and L792H on C797S/activating-mutation were found as afatinib resistance and not as gefitinib resistance. Thus, compared to afatinib, the first-generation EGFR-TKI might be preferable as second-line treatment to C797S/activating-mutation emerging after first-line osimertinib treatment.

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