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      A Prospective, Molecular Epidemiology Study of EGFR Mutations in Asian Patients with Advanced Non–Small-Cell Lung Cancer of Adenocarcinoma Histology (PIONEER)


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          PIONEER (NCT01185314) was a prospective, multinational, epidemiological study of epidermal growth factor receptor ( EGFR) mutations in patients from Asia with newly diagnosed advanced lung adenocarcinoma.


          Eligible patients (aged ≥20 years) had untreated stage IIIB/IV adenocarcinoma. The EGFR mutation status (primary end point: positive, negative, or undetermined) of tumor samples (biopsy, surgical specimen, or cytology) was determined (Scorpion amplification refractory mutation system). EGFR mutation frequency was calculated and compared between demographic and clinical subgroups.


          Of 1482 patients from seven Asian regions, 43.4% of patients were female, median age was 60 years (range, 17–94), and 52.6% of patients were never-smokers. EGFR mutation status was evaluable in tumors from 1450 patients (97.8%) (746 [51.4%] positive; 704 [48.6%] negative). Country, sex, ethnicity, smoking status, pack-years (all p < 0.001), disease stage ( p = 0.009), and histology type ( p = 0.016) correlated significantly with EGFR mutation frequency. Mutation frequency was 61.1% in females, 44.0% in males; lower in patients from India (22.2%) compared with other areas (47.2%–64.2%); highest among never-smokers (60.7%); and decreased as pack-year number increased (>0–10 pack-years, 57.9%; >50 pack-years, 31.4%) (similar trend by sex). Ethnic group ( p < 0.001) and pack-years ( p < 0.001) had statistically significant associations with mutation frequency (multivariate analysis); sex was not significant when adjusted for smoking status.


          PIONEER is the first prospective study to confirm high EGFR mutation frequency (51.4% overall) in tumors from Asian patients with adenocarcinoma. The observed high mutation frequency in demographic/clinical subgroups compared with white populations suggests that mutation testing should be considered for all patients with stage IIIB/IV adenocarcinoma, even males and regular smokers, among Asian populations.

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          Clinical and biological features associated with epidermal growth factor receptor gene mutations in lung cancers.

          Mutations in the tyrosine kinase (TK) domain of the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) gene in lung cancers are associated with increased sensitivity of these cancers to drugs that inhibit EGFR kinase activity. However, the role of such mutations in the pathogenesis of lung cancers is unclear. We sequenced exons 18-21 of the EGFR TK domain from genomic DNA isolated from 617 non-small-cell lung cancers (NSCLCs) and 524 normal lung tissue samples from the same patients and 36 neuroendocrine lung tumors collected from patients in Japan, Taiwan, the United States, and Australia and from 243 other epithelial cancers. Mutation status was compared with clinicopathologic features and with the presence of mutations in KRAS, a gene in the EGFR signaling pathway that is also frequently mutated in lung cancers. All statistical tests were two sided. We detected a total of 134 EGFR TK domain mutations in 130 (21%) of the 617 NSCLCs but not in any of the other carcinomas, nor in nonmalignant lung tissue from the same patients. In NSCLC patients, EGFR TK domain mutations were statistically significantly more frequent in never smokers than ever smokers (51% versus 10%), in adenocarcinomas versus cancer of other histologies (40% versus 3%), in patients of East Asian ethnicity versus other ethnicities (30% versus 8%), and in females versus males (42% versus 14%; all P < .001). EGFR TK domain mutation status was not associated with patient age at diagnosis, clinical stage, the presence of bronchioloalveolar histologic features, or overall survival. The EGFR TK domain mutations we detected were of three common types: in-frame deletions in exon 19, single missense mutations in exon 21, and in-frame duplications/insertions in exon 20. Rare missense mutations were also detected in exons 18, 20, and 21. KRAS gene mutations were present in 50 (8%) of the 617 NSCLCs but not in any tumors with an EGFR TK domain mutation. Mutations in either the EGFR TK domain or the KRAS gene can lead to lung cancer pathogenesis. EGFR TK domain mutations are the first molecular change known to occur specifically in never smokers.
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            Mutations of the epidermal growth factor receptor gene in lung cancer: biological and clinical implications.

            Recently it has been reported that mutations in the tyrosine kinase domain of the epidermal growth factor receptor(EGFR) gene occur in a subset of patients with lung cancer showing a dramatic response to EGFR tyrosine kinase inhibitors. To gain further insights in the role of EGFR in lung carcinogenesis, we sequenced exons 18-21 of the tyrosine kinase domain using total RNA extracted from unselected 277 patients with lung cancer who underwent surgical resection and correlated the results with clinical and pathologic features. EGFR mutations were present in 111 patients (40%). Fifty-two were in-frame deletions around codons 746-750 in exon 19, 54 were point mutations including 49 at codon 858 in exon 21 and 4 at codon 719 in exon 18, and 5 were duplications/insertions mainly in exon 20. They were significantly more frequent in female (P < 0.001), adenocarcinomas (P = 0.0013), and in never-smokers (P < 0.001). Multivariate analysis suggested EGFR mutations were independently associated with adenocarcinoma histology (P = 0.0012) and smoking status (P < 0.001), but not with female gender (P = 0.9917). In adenocarcinomas, EGFR mutations were more frequent in well to moderately differentiated tumors (P < 0.001) but were independent of patient age, disease stages, or patient survival. KRAS and TP53 mutations were present in 13 and 41%, respectively. EGFR mutations never occurred in tumors with KRAS mutations, whereas EGFR mutations were independent of TP53 mutations. EGFR mutations define a distinct subset of pulmonary adenocarcinoma without KRAS mutations, which is not caused by tobacco carcinogens.
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              Is Open Access

              Molecular testing guideline for selection of lung cancer patients for EGFR and ALK tyrosine kinase inhibitors: guideline from the College of American Pathologists, International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer, and Association for Molecular Pathology.

              To establish evidence-based recommendations for the molecular analysis of lung cancers that are that are required to guide EGFR- and ALK-directed therapies, addressing which patients and samples should be tested, and when and how testing should be performed. Three cochairs without conflicts of interest were selected, one from each of the 3 sponsoring professional societies: College of American Pathologists, International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer, and Association for Molecular Pathology. Writing and advisory panels were constituted from additional experts from these societies. Three unbiased literature searches of electronic databases were performed to capture articles published published from January 2004 through February 2012, yielding 1533 articles whose abstracts were screened to identify 521 pertinent articles that were then reviewed in detail for their relevance to the recommendations. Evidence was formally graded for each recommendation. Initial recommendations were formulated by the cochairs and panel members at a public meeting. Each guideline section was assigned to at least 2 panelists. Drafts were circulated to the writing panel (version 1), advisory panel (version 2), and the public (version 3) before submission (version 4). The 37 guideline items address 14 subjects, including 15 recommendations (evidence grade A/B). The major recommendations are to use testing for EGFR mutations and ALK fusions to guide patient selection for therapy with an epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) or anaplastic lymphoma kinase (ALK) inhibitor, respectively, in all patients with advanced-stage adenocarcinoma, regardless of sex, race, smoking history, or other clinical risk factors, and to prioritize EGFR and ALK testing over other molecular predictive tests. As scientific discoveries and clinical practice outpace the completion of randomized clinical trials, evidence-based guidelines developed by expert practitioners are vital for communicating emerging clinical standards. Already, new treatments targeting genetic alterations in other, less common driver oncogenes are being evaluated in lung cancer, and testing for these may be addressed in future versions of these guidelines.

                Author and article information

                J Thorac Oncol
                J Thorac Oncol
                Journal of Thoracic Oncology
                Lippincott Williams & Wilkins
                February 2014
                23 January 2014
                : 9
                : 2
                : 154-162
                [* ]Department of Medical Oncology, Cancer Institute/Hospital, Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences and Peking Union Medical College; Beijing Key Laboratory of Clinical Study on Anticancer Molecular Targeted Drugs, Beijing, China; []Department of Clinical Oncology, Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Kowloon, Hong Kong; []Department of Internal Medicine, Maharaj Nakorn Chiang Mai Hospital; Faculty of Medicine, Chiang Mai University, Chiang Mai, Thailand; [§ ]Medical Oncology Department, Apollo Speciality Hospital, Anna Salai, Chennai, India; []Chest Department, Taipei Veteran’s General Hospital, Taipei, Taiwan; []Nuclear Medicine and Oncology Center, Bach Mai Hospital, Hanoi, Vietnam; [# ]Medical Department, AstraZeneca, Singapore; [** ]Clinical Science Division, AstraZeneca, Osaka, Japan; [†† ]St. Peregrine Oncology Unit, San Juan De Dios Hospital, Pasay City, Philippines; and [‡‡ ]Department of Internal Medicine, National Taiwan University College of Medicine, National Taiwan University, Taipei, Taiwan.
                Author notes
                Address for correspondence: Pan-Chyr Yang, MD, Department of Internal Medicine, National Taiwan University College of Medicine, National Taiwan University, 1, Sec 1, Ren-Ai Road, Taipei 10051, Taiwan. E-mail: pcyang@ 123456ntu.edu.tw
                Copyright © 2013 by the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer

                This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivitives 3.0 License, where it is permissible to download and share the work provided it is properly cited. The work cannot be changed in any way or used commercially.

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                epidermal growth factor receptor mutation,epidemiology,asian,adenocarcinoma,non–small-cell lung cancer


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