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Breast Cancer Res Treat. 2018 Dec;172(3):733-740. doi: 10.1007/s10549-018-4959-8. Epub 2018 Sep 15.

Effectiveness and tolerability of neoadjuvant pertuzumab-containing regimens for HER2-positive localized breast cancer.

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Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center, Harvard Medical School, 55 Fruit St., Boston, MA, 02114, USA.
Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center, Harvard Medical School, 55 Fruit St., Boston, MA, 02114, USA.



Based on improvement in pathologic complete response (pCR) in the NeoSphere and TRYPHAENA studies, the FDA approved neoadjuvant pertuzumab for HER2+ localized breast cancer. These studies demonstrated high pCR rates with THP (docetaxel + HP), FEC (5-fluorouracil, epirubicin, and cyclophosphamide)-THP, and TCHP (docetaxel, carboplatin + HP). However, in the United States, doxorubicin/cyclophosphamide (AC) is favored over FEC despite no data comparing neoadjuvant AC-THP with AC-TH or TCHP. Here we report outcomes for patients with localized HER2+ breast cancer treated with pertuzumab-containing neoadjuvant regimens and AC-TH.


We reviewed clinicopathological characteristics of patients with HER2+ breast cancer (Stage I-III) treated with either a neoadjuvant pertuzumab-containing regimen or dose-dense (dd) AC-TH, from 2011 to 2016 at a large academic medical institution and two affiliated community sites. pCR was defined as ypT0/is ypN0. Fisher's exact test and logistic regression analysis were used for statistical analysis.


In this study (N = 121), pCR was numerically higher with pertuzumab-based regimens, including ddAC-THP (60%), TCHP (63%), THP (55%), as compared with ddAC-TH (46%). THP resulted in significantly less cycle delays due to toxicity compared to the other regimens (p = 0.02). THP also resulted in the least dose reductions, lowest rate of hospitalization, and lowest rate of treatment discontinuation.


Pertuzumab-based regimens, including THP, resulted in higher pCR rates as compared to ddAC-TH, with the THP regimen associated with the best tolerability among patients with localized HER2+ breast cancer. Given the various neoadjuvant regimens, additional studies are needed to determine optimal treatment sequencing and escalation/de-escalation strategies to personalize neoadjuvant regimens for localized HER2+ breast cancer.


HER2; Neoadjuvant; Pathologic complete response; Pertuzumab; Trastuzumab

[Available on 2019-12-01]
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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