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World J Gastroenterol. 2012 Nov 14;18(42):6134-40. doi: 10.3748/wjg.v18.i42.6134.

Transcatheter arterial chemoembolization for gastrointestinal stromal tumors with liver metastases.

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Key Laboratory of Carcinogenesis and Translational Research-Ministry of Education of China, Department of Interventional Therapy, Peking University Cancer Hospital and Institute, Beijing 100142, China.



To evaluate the efficacy and safety of transcatheter arterial chemoembolization (TACE) for gastrointestinal stromal tumor (GIST) with liver metastases after the failure of tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs).


Patients with histologically confirmed CD117-positive GIST with liver metastases who were resistant and/or intolerant to prior imatinib and/or sunitinib and who received TACE for at least one treatment cycle or only best supportive care and TKI reintroduction were eligible for the study. The patients were divided into two groups: those in TACE group received TACE treatment containing 5-20 mL iodized oil and 40-80 mg doxorubicin hydrochloride and TKI reintroduction or best supportive care, those in control group only received TKI reintroduction or best supportive care. The primary end-point was overall survival and the secondary end-points were, progression-free survival (PFS), response rates, and safety.


Sixty patients admitted between June 2008 and October 2011 were eligible for this study, including 22 in TACE group and 38 in control group. In the TACE group, 12 (54.5%) achieved liver partial response, 5 (22.7%) had stable disease, and 5 (22.7%) had liver progressive disease. Disease control rate of liver metastases was 77.3% in the TACE group and 39.5% in the control group. The median liver PFS in TACE group was 47.1 wk (95% CI: 23.9-70.3). The median PFS in TACE group was longer than in control group (30.0 wk, 95% CI: 20.1-39.9 vs 12.9 wk, 95% CI: 11.9-13.9) (P = 0.0001). The median overall survival in TACE group was also longer than in control group (68.5 wk, 95% CI: 57.4-79.6 vs 25.7 wk, 95% CI: 23.2-28.2) (P = 0.0001). TACE treatment signi´Čücantly reduced the risk of death (hazard ratio: 0.109). Patients without extrahepatic metastases treated with TACE had significantly better prognosis. Most of the adverse events were of grade 1 or 2 and tolerable.


TACE is effective and well tolerated in GIST patients with liver metastases after TKI failure, and it may be an optional treatment for this disease.


Gastrointestinal stromal tumor; Liver metastases; Overall survival; Transcatheter arterial chemoembolization; Tyrosine kinase inhibitor failure

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