Sir Peter MacCallum Department of Oncology - Research Publications
Now showing items 1-12 of 1698
Transcriptome of Male Breast Cancer Matched with Germline Profiling Reveals Novel Molecular Subtypes with Possible Clinical Relevance
Male breast cancer (MBC) is a rare and understudied disease compared with female BC. About 15% of MBCs are associated with germline mutation in BC susceptibility genes, mainly BRCA1/2 and PALB2. Hereditary MBCs are likely to represent a subgroup of tumors with a peculiar phenotype. Here, we performed a whole transcriptome analysis of MBCs characterized for germline mutations in the most relevant BC susceptibility genes in order to identify molecular subtypes with clinical relevance. A series of 63 MBCs, including 16 BRCA2, 6 BRCA1, 2 PALB2, 1 RAD50, and 1 RAD51D germline-mutated cases, was analyzed by RNA-sequencing. Differential expression and hierarchical clustering analyses were performed. Module signatures associated with central biological processes involved in breast cancer pathogenesis were also examined. Different transcriptome profiles for genes mainly involved in the cell cycle, DNA damage, and DNA repair pathways emerged between MBCs with and without germline mutations. Unsupervised clustering analysis revealed two distinct subgroups, one of which was characterized by a higher expression of immune response genes, high scores of gene-expression signatures suggestive of aggressive behavior, and worse overall survival. Our results suggest that transcriptome matched with germline profiling may be a valuable approach for the identification and characterization of MBC subtypes with possible relevance in the clinical setting.
Antibiotics versus no therapy in kidney transplant recipients with asymptomatic bacteriuria (BiRT): a pragmatic, multicentre, randomized, controlled trial
(ELSEVIER SCI LTD, 2021-03-01)
OBJECTIVES: Many transplant physicians screen for and treat asymptomatic bacteriuria (ASB) during post-kidney-transplant surveillance. We investigated whether antibiotics are effective in reducing the occurrence of symptomatic urinary tract infection (UTI) in kidney transplant recipients with ASB. METHODS: We performed this multicentre, randomized, open-label trial in kidney transplant recipients who had ASB and were ≥2 months post-transplantation. We randomly assigned participants to receive antibiotics or no therapy. The primary outcome was the incidence of symptomatic UTI over the subsequent 12 months. RESULTS: One hundred and ninety-nine kidney transplant recipients with ASB were randomly assigned to antibiotics (100 participants) or no therapy (99 participants). There was no significant difference in the occurrence of symptomatic UTI between the antibiotic and no-therapy groups (27%, 27/100 versus 31%, 31/99; univariate Cox model: hazard ratio 0.83, 95%CI: 0.50-1.40; log-rank test: p 0.49). Over the 1-year study period, antibiotic use was five times higher in the antibiotic group than in the no-therapy group (30 antibiotic days/participant, interquartile range 20-41, versus 6, interquartile range 0-15, p < 0.001). Overall, 155/199 participants (78%) had at least one further episode of bacteriuria during the follow-up. Compared with the participant's baseline episode of ASB, the second episode of bacteriuria was more frequently caused by bacteria resistant to clinically relevant antibiotics (ciprofloxacin, cotrimoxazole, third-generation cephalosporin) in the antibiotic group than in the no-therapy group (18%, 13/72 versus 4%, 3/83, p 0.003). CONCLUSIONS: Applying a screen-and-treat strategy for ASB does not reduce the occurrence of symptomatic UTI in kidney transplant recipients who are more than 2 months post-transplantation. Furthermore, this strategy increases antibiotic use and promotes the emergence of resistant organisms.
The evolving status of immunotherapies in multiple myeloma: the future role of bispecific antibodies
Treatment outcomes in multiple myeloma (MM) have improved dramatically over the past 10 years. However, patients with high-risk disease such as those with Stage III disease by the Revised International Staging System, the presence of adverse cytogenetics, or who are refractory to proteosome inhibitors, immunomodulatory drugs and monoclonal antibodies may have dismal outcomes. These patients represent an urgent ongoing need in MM. One of the hallmarks of MM is immune dysfunction and a tumour-permissive immune microenvironment. Ameliorating the immune-paresis could lead to improved outcomes. The role of immunotherapies has been growing at an exponential pace with numerous agents under development in clinical trials. In the present review, we provide an overview of immunotherapies in MM, focussing on bispecific antibodies (BsAbs). We review efficacy outcomes from the published clinical trials and consider the important safety aspects of these therapies, in particular the risk of cytokine-release syndrome and immune effector cell-associated neurotoxicity syndrome, and how these compare with patients receiving chimeric antigen receptor T cells. We discuss the MM epitopes being targeted by BsAbs, either in clinical or preclinical stages, and we consider where these therapies might best fit within the future ever-changing paradigm of MM treatment.
Exploration of motivation to participate in a study of cancer-related cognitive impairment among patients with newly diagnosed aggressive lymphoma: a qualitative sub-study
PURPOSE: Cancer-related cognitive impairment (CRCI) is a recognised adverse consequence of cancer and its treatment. This qualitative sub-study was undertaken as part of a larger prospective longitudinal study in which recruitment and retention were very high. The aim was to gain an understanding of participants reasons for ongoing participation, at a time of heightened stress related to a new diagnosis of aggressive lymphoma and the rapid commencement of treatment. METHODS: This qualitative descriptive sub-study included semi-structured interviews with twenty-seven participants. Interviews were recorded and transcribed, and a thematic descriptive approach was used to analyse the data. RESULTS: Twenty-seven interviews were completed. Four themes described participants' motivation to consent and continue with the study. These included ease of participation, personal values, self-help and valued additional support. Participants understood the requirements of the study, and data collection occurring during hospital visits was perceived to be convenient. Interviewees confirmed that the study fulfilled desire to "help others". Although testing was intense and challenging, it provided feedback on current functioning and was described by some as a "welcome distraction" and enjoyable. Finally, interaction with the study nurse was perceived as an additional beneficial oversight and support. CONCLUSION: Achieving sustained participation in a prospective study with patients undergoing treatment is facilitated where the logistical demands of data collection are minimised; a clinician from the service is included; the tasks are seen as inherently interesting; and care is taken to provide empathic support throughout. TRIAL REGISTRATION: Australian New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry ACTRN12619001649101.
Phase I Study of Venetoclax Plus Daratumumab and Dexamethasone, With or Without Bortezomib, in Patients With Relapsed or Refractory Multiple Myeloma With and Without t(11;14).
(American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO), 2021-08-13)
PURPOSE: Venetoclax is an oral BCL-2 inhibitor with single-agent activity in patients with relapsed or refractory multiple myeloma (RRMM) with t(11;14) translocation. Venetoclax efficacy in RRMM may be potentiated through combination with agents including bortezomib, dexamethasone, and daratumumab. METHODS: This phase I study (NCT03314181) evaluated venetoclax with daratumumab and dexamethasone (VenDd) in patients with t(11;14) RRMM and VenDd with bortezomib (VenDVd) in cytogenetically unselected patients with RRMM. Primary objectives included expansion-phase dosing, safety, and overall response rate. Secondary objectives included further safety analysis, progression-free survival, duration of response, time to progression, and minimal residual disease negativity. RESULTS: Forty-eight patients were enrolled, 24 each in parts 1 (VenDd) and 2 (VenDVd). There was one dose-limiting toxicity in part 1 (grade 3 febrile neutropenia, 800 mg VenDd). Common adverse events with VenDd and VenDVd included diarrhea (63% and 54%) and nausea (50% and 50%); grade ≥ 3 adverse events were observed in 88% in the VenDd group and 71% in the VenDVd group. One treatment-emergent death occurred in part 2 (sepsis) in the context of progressive disease, with no other infection-related deaths on study with medians of 20.9 and 20.4 months of follow-up in parts 1 and 2, respectively. The overall response rate was 96% with VenDd (all very good partial response or better [≥ VGPR]) and 92% with VenDVd (79% ≥ VGPR). The 18-month progression-free survival rate was 90.5% (95% CI, 67.0 to 97.5) with VenDd and 66.7% (95% CI, 42.5 to 82.5) with VenDVd. CONCLUSION: VenDd and VenDVd produced a high rate of deep and durable responses in patients with RRMM. These results support continued evaluation of venetoclax with daratumumab regimens to treat RRMM, particularly in those with t(11;14).
'Pain-free TRUS B': a phase 3 double-blind placebo-controlled randomized trial of methoxyflurane with periprostatic local anaesthesia to reduce the discomfort of transrectal ultrasonography-guided prostate biopsy (ANZUP 1501)
OBJECTIVE: To determine whether the addition of inhaled methoxyflurane to periprostatic infiltration of local anaesthetic (PILA) during transrectal ultrasonography-guided prostate biopsies (TRUSBs) improved pain and other aspects of the experience. PATIENTS AND METHODS: We conducted a multicentre, placebo-controlled, double-blind, randomized phase 3 trial, involving 420 men undergoing their first TRUSB. The intervention was PILA plus a patient-controlled device containing either 3 mL methoxyflurane, or 3 mL 0.9% saline plus one drop of methoxyflurane to preserve blinding. The primary outcome was the pain score (0-10) reported by the participant after 15 min. Secondary outcomes included ratings of other aspects of the biopsy experience, willingness to undergo future biopsies, urologists' ratings, biopsy completion, and adverse events. RESULTS: The mean (SE) pain scores 15 min after TRUSB were 2.51 (0.22) in those assigned methoxyflurane vs 2.82 (0.22) for placebo (difference 0.31, 95% confidence interval [CI] -0.75 to 0.14; P = 0.18). Methoxyflurane was associated with better scores for discomfort (difference -0.48, 95% CI -0.92 to -0.03; P = 0.035, adjusted [adj.] P = 0.076), whole experience (difference -0.50, 95% CI -0.92 to -0.08; P = 0.021, adj. P = 0.053), and willingness to undergo repeat biopsies (odds ratio 1.67, 95% CI 1.12-2.49; P = 0.01) than placebo. Methoxyflurane resulted in higher scores for drowsiness (difference +1.64, 95% CI 1.21-2.07; P < 0.001, adj. P < 0.001) and dizziness (difference +1.78, 95% CI 1.31-2.24; P < 0.001, adj. P < 0.001) than placebo. There was no significant difference in the number of ≥ grade 3 adverse events. CONCLUSIONS: We found no evidence that methoxyflurane improved pain scores at 15 min, however, improvements were seen in patient-reported discomfort, overall experience, and willingness to undergo repeat biopsies.
A randomized phase II trial of veliparib, radiotherapy, and temozolomide in patients with unmethylated MGMT glioblastoma: the VERTU study.
(Oxford University Press (OUP), 2021-10-01)
BACKGROUND: Temozolomide offers minimal benefit in patients with glioblastoma with unmethylated O6-methylguanine-DNA methyltransferase (MGMT) promoter status, hence, the need for novel therapies. This study evaluated whether veliparib, a brain-penetrant poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase (PARP) inhibitor, acts synergistically with radiation and temozolomide. METHODS: VERTU was a multicenter 2:1 randomized phase II trial in patients with newly diagnosed glioblastoma and MGMT-unmethylated promotor status. The experimental arm consisted of veliparib and radiotherapy, followed by adjuvant veliparib and temozolomide. The standard arm consisted of concurrent temozolomide and radiotherapy, followed by adjuvant temozolomide. The primary objective was to extend the progression-free survival rate at six months (PFS-6m) in the experimental arm. RESULTS: A total of 125 participants were enrolled, with 84 in the experimental arm and 41 in the standard arm. The median age was 61 years, 70% were male, 59% had Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group (ECOG) performance status of 0, and 87% underwent macroscopic resection. PFS-6m was 46% (95% confidence interval [CI]: 36%-57%) in the experimental arm and 31% (95% CI: 18%-46%) in the standard arm. Median overall survival was 12.7 months (95% CI: 11.4-14.5 months) in the experimental arm and 12.8 months (95% CI: 9.5-15.8 months) in the standard arm. The most common grade 3-4 adverse events were thrombocytopenia and neutropenia, with no new safety signals. CONCLUSION: The veliparib-containing regimen was feasible and well tolerated. However, there was insufficient evidence of clinical benefit in this population. Further information from correlative translational work and other trials of PARP inhibitors in glioblastoma are still awaited.
Bilateral Salpingo-oophorectomy and Breast Cancer Risk for BRCA1 and BRCA2 Mutation Carriers: Assessing the Evidence.
(American Association for Cancer Research (AACR), 2021-08-04)
Without preventive interventions, women with germline pathogenic variants in BRCA1 or BRCA2 have high lifetime risks for breast cancer and tubo-ovarian cancer. The increased risk for breast cancer starts at a considerably younger age than that for tubo-ovarian cancer. Risk-reducing bilateral salpingo-oophorectomy (rrBSO) is effective in reducing tubo-ovarian cancer risk for BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutation carriers, but whether it reduces breast cancer risk is less clear. All studies of rrBSO and breast cancer risk are observational in nature and subject to various forms of bias and confounding, thus limiting conclusions that can be drawn about causation. Early studies supported a statistically significant protective association for rrBSO on breast cancer risk, which is reflected by several international guidelines that recommend consideration of premenopausal rrBSO for breast cancer risk reduction. However, these historical studies were hampered by the presence of several important biases, including immortal person-time bias, confounding by indication, informative censoring, and confounding by other risk factors, which may have led to overestimation of any protective benefit. Contemporary studies, specifically designed to reduce some of these biases, have yielded contradictory results. Taken together, there is no clear and consistent evidence for a role of premenopausal rrBSO in reducing breast cancer risk in BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutation carriers.
Mendelian randomisation study of smoking exposure in relation to breast cancer risk
BACKGROUND: Despite a modest association between tobacco smoking and breast cancer risk reported by recent epidemiological studies, it is still equivocal whether smoking is causally related to breast cancer risk. METHODS: We applied Mendelian randomisation (MR) to evaluate a potential causal effect of cigarette smoking on breast cancer risk. Both individual-level data as well as summary statistics for 164 single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) reported in genome-wide association studies of lifetime smoking index (LSI) or cigarette per day (CPD) were used to obtain MR effect estimates. Data from 108,420 invasive breast cancer cases and 87,681 controls were used for the LSI analysis and for the CPD analysis conducted among ever-smokers from 26,147 cancer cases and 26,072 controls. Sensitivity analyses were conducted to address pleiotropy. RESULTS: Genetically predicted LSI was associated with increased breast cancer risk (OR 1.18 per SD, 95% CI: 1.07-1.30, P = 0.11 × 10-2), but there was no evidence of association for genetically predicted CPD (OR 1.02, 95% CI: 0.78-1.19, P = 0.85). The sensitivity analyses yielded similar results and showed no strong evidence of pleiotropic effect. CONCLUSION: Our MR study provides supportive evidence for a potential causal association with breast cancer risk for lifetime smoking exposure but not cigarettes per day among smokers.