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The efficiency and safety of trastuzumab and lapatinib added to neoadjuvant chemotherapy in Her2-positive breast cancer patients: a randomized meta-analysis

Authors Chen Z, Shen Y, Li S, Li C, Zhang L, Yang J, Lv M, Lin Y, Wang X, Yang J

Received 8 February 2016

Accepted for publication 8 April 2016

Published 30 May 2016 Volume 2016:9 Pages 3233—3247


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewers approved by Dr Manfred Beleut

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Professor Min Li

Zhe-Ling Chen, Yan-Wei Shen, Shu-Ting Li, Chun-Li Li, Ling-Xiao Zhang, Jiao Yang, Meng Lv, Ya-Yun Lin, Xin Wang, Jin Yang

Department of Medical Oncology, The First Affiliated Hospital of Xi’an Jiaotong University, Xi’an, Shaanxi, People’s Republic of China

The addition of human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (Her2) therapies to neoadjuvant chemotherapy (NAC) during treatment of Her2-positive breast cancer has been proposed as an effective way to improve the prognosis. However, the treatment outcomes of adding trastuzumab, lapatinib, or both to NAC were not unequivocal in randomized clinical trials. Based on these data, a meta-analysis was performed.
Objective: The main objective was to evaluate the efficiency and safety of trastuzumab and lapatinib added to NAC for treatment of Her2-positive breast cancer.
Methods: and PubMed were searched for randomized clinical trials that compared trastuzumab, lapatinib, or both, added to NAC. The main endpoint was a pathologically complete response (pCR) rate, in breast only or in breast and lymph nodes. The drug safety and the influence of hormone-receptor status, comparing the clinical response and the rate of breast conservation, were evaluated.
Results: A total of eight publications were included in the primary analysis, designed as two or three subgroups. The cumulative cases were 2,349 and the analyses of all the clinical trials showed that the pCR rate was significantly higher in the group receiving trastuzumab than that in the group with lapatinib, either in breast only (P=0.001) or in breast and lymph nodes (P=0.0001). Similar results could be seen in comparisons of the combination versus trastuzumab group. Further studies of subgroups divided into hormone receptor-positive or-negative patients showed that the addition of trastuzumab or dual Her2-targeted therapy significantly improved the pCR rate in patients who were hormone-insensitive. Regarding the toxic effects, we found more grade 3 and 4 toxic effects, such as diarrhea, skin disorder, and hepatic biochemical changes in the lapatinib and combination groups. No temporally significant differences were found when the clinical response and the rate of breast conservation in the groups were analyzed.
The combination of trastuzumab and lapatinib was superior to single-agent treatment for improved pCR rate. However, combination treatment was not effective in improving the rate of breast conservation. Furthermore, a higher risk for toxicity was associated with combined administration.

Keywords: breast cancer, trastuzumab, lapatinib, human epidermal growth factor receptor, neoadjuvant, pathologically complete response

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