CHICAGO, June 9, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Cancer researchers have identified precision treatment options for patients with increasingly aggressive colorectal tumors. Based on genomic profiles, oncologists developed a personalized treatment approach that achieved a rapid and dramatic response in patients, according to a study published in the June 2016 edition of Cancer Discovery – "BRAFV600E Mutations in High-Grade Colorectal Neuroendocrine Tumors May Predict Responsiveness to BRAF-MEK Combination Therapy."
Bruce Gershenhorn, D.O., a medical oncologist at Cancer Treatment Centers of America® (CTCA) at Midwestern Regional Medical Center (Midwestern), along with other researchers, looked at 108 patient cases to identify effective treatment options for neuroendocrine tumors (NET) of the digestive tract. These solid tumors are increasing with an estimated annual incident rate of 3.65/100,000, according to the National Cancer Institute Surveillance, Epidemiology and End Results (SEER) registry.
The study, which identifies recurrent somatic BRAF alterations in high-grade colorectal NETs, is highlighted by the dramatic response of two patients within the group. The patients, both female, were diagnosed with treatment-refractory metastatic high-grade rectal NET harboring a BRAFV600E substitution. For each patient, to investigate further therapeutic options, a comprehensive genomic profile was conducted.
"This is the largest published colorectal NET series and the first reported oncogenic BRAF mutation in high-grade NET," Gershenhorn said. "What we have demonstrated in this study is the ability of genomic profiling to identify therapeutically relevant alterations in this aggressive disease with no standard treatment approach."
With a tailored treatment approach, based on the findings of the genomic profiling, each patient achieved a rapid and dramatic response to combination BRAF-MEK inhibition-directed therapy.
Patient A, a 70-year old female diagnosed with a poorly differentiated high-grade (grade 3) rectal NET, received neoadjuvant chemoradiation, followed by a low anterior resection and end colostomy showed metastatic disease, which was confirmed by a liver biopsy as high-grade NET. Follow-up scans confirmed disease progression and she reported abdominal pain with 3 months of her treatment. After her genomic profiling revealed BRAFV600E substitution at a mutant allele frequency (MAF) of 26 percent, she was transitioned to two different drugs, and her symptoms resolved within 10 days of treatment.
Patient B, a 39-year old female was found to have a locally advanced high-grade rectal NET. She was treated with chemotherapy and radiation but developed progressive disease with metastases, and worsening rectal pain. After her genomic profiling revealed BRAFV600E substitution at an (MAF) of 53 percent, she was transitioned to two other drugs, and within three days her pain issue was resolved, followed by dramatic radiographic response.
"Finding driver mutations, which are the engines of the cancer cell, in uncommon cancers can sometimes provide a unique treatment option for those patients," Gershenhorn said. "This case is a great example of the benefits of NGS in patients with rare tumors, by finding a common and 'targetable' driver, extrapolating from what is known about the mutation in another cancer type, and using a powerful, precision drug combination to target that engine."
About Cancer Treatment Centers of America®
Cancer Treatment Centers of America Global, Inc. (CTCA), headquartered in Boca Raton, Fla., is a national network of five hospitals that serves adult patients who are fighting cancer. CTCA® offers an integrative approach to care that combines advancements in genomic testing and precision cancer treatment, surgery, radiation, immunotherapy and chemotherapy, with evidence-based supportive therapies designed to help patients physically and emotionally by enhancing their quality of life while managing side effects both during and after treatment. CTCA serves patients from around the world at its hospitals in Atlanta, Chicago, Philadelphia, Phoenix and Tulsa. Consistently rated among U.S. hospitals that deliver the highest quality of care and patient experience, CTCA provides patients and their families with comprehensive information about their treatment options and encourages their active participation in treatment decisions. For more information, visit cancercenter.com, Facebook.com/cancercenter and Twitter.com/cancercenter.
About Cancer Treatment Centers of America® at Midwestern Regional Medical Center
Cancer Treatment Centers of America® (CTCA) at Midwestern Regional Medical Center (Midwestern) is a landmark in cancer care that uses advanced technology and precision medicine to offer treatment for adult patients battling cancer. The 72-bed hospital combines innovative conventional medical treatments with evidence-based integrative oncology services to deliver whole-person care. CTCA® at Midwestern is a Magnet Recognized® hospital, ranking among the top centers in the nation for nursing excellence. The hospital is accredited by the Foundation for the Accreditation of Cellular Therapy (FACT) at the University of Nebraska Medical Center for demonstrating compliance with the FACT-JACIE International Standards for Cellular Therapy Product Collection, Processing and Administration. CTCA at Midwestern also holds high honors as a Certified Quality Breast Center of Excellence™, recognized by the National Quality Measures for Breast Centers Program™ (NQMBC®). For more information, please visit www.cancercenter.com/midwestern.
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SOURCE Cancer Treatment Centers of America