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Ann Thorac Surg. 2013 Sep;96(3):962-8. doi: 10.1016/j.athoracsur.2013.05.091. Epub 2013 Aug 8.

The impact of EGFR mutation status on outcomes in patients with resected stage I non-small cell lung cancers.

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Department of Medicine, Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts 02114, USA.



Mutations of the epidermal growth factor hormone receptor (EGFR) gene have been associated with improved treatment response and prognosis in advanced non-small lung cancer (NSCLC). However, their prognostic role in early-stage NSCLC is not well defined. In this study we sought to identify the pure prognostic role of EGFR mutation in patients with completely resected stage I NSCLC who received no adjuvant therapy.


Mutation status was tested in treatment-naïve patients who had complete resection of stage I (T1-2aN0) NSCLC (from 2004 to 2011) using direct sequencing or multiplex polymerase chain reaction-based assay. Recurrence rates, disease-free survival, and overall survival were compared between EGFR-mutant and wild-type patients using Kaplan-Meier methods and Cox regression models.


Three hundred seven patients were included in this study; 62 harbored tumors with EGFR mutations and 245 had wild-type EGFR. Tumors in patients with EGFR mutations were associated with a significantly lower recurrence rate (9.7% versus 21.6%; p=0.03), greater median disease-free survival (8.8 versus 7.0 years; p=0.0085), and improved overall 5-year survival (98% versus 73%; p=0.003) compared with wild-type tumors. Lobectomy was the most frequently performed procedure, accounting for 209 of 307 operations. Among these patients, EGFR mutation was associated with superior overall survival (hazard ratio, 0.45; 95% confidence interval, 0.13 to 0.83; p=0.017), with an estimated 5-year survival of 98% versus 70%. The presence of EGFR mutation (p=0.026) and tumor size less than 2 cm (p=0.04) were identified as independent prognostic markers for disease-free survival, whereas age, sex, and smoking status were not.


Completely resected stage I EGFR mutation-positive NSCLC patients have a significant survival advantage compared with EGFR wild-type patients. Mutation of the EGFR gene is a positive prognostic marker in completely resected stage I NSCLC.



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