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Breast Cancer Res Treat. 2015 Feb;150(1):157-67. doi: 10.1007/s10549-015-3292-8. Epub 2015 Feb 17.

Sirolimus and trastuzumab combination therapy for HER2-positive metastatic breast cancer after progression on prior trastuzumab therapy.

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Section of Medical Oncology, Yale University School of Medicine, 333 Cedar Street, New Haven, CT, 06520, USA,


Constitutive activation of the PI3K/Akt/mTOR pathway has been suggested as a mechanism of resistance to trastuzumab therapy. This phase II trial was designed to evaluate the safety and clinical activity of daily oral sirolimus, a mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) inhibitor, in combination with trastuzumab in HER2-positive metastatic breast cancer following disease progression on prior trastuzumab therapy. Sirolimus 6 mg oral daily dose was administered with a standard dose and schedule of trastuzumab weekly or every 3 weeks. Pharmacodynamic studies included Western blot analysis of S6K1, phosphoS6K1, and mTOR in peripheral mononuclear cells, circulating tumor cells (CTC), and endothelial cells (CEC). Eleven patients were evaluable for safety; and nine were evaluable for response assessment. Subsequent enrollment was stopped due to slow accrual. Study treatment-related grade 3 toxicity included pneumonitis, myelosuppression (leukopenia/anemia), and dermatologic reactions (mucositis, nail changes and rash), with no grade 4 events. One patient received eight cycles (58 weeks) and achieved a partial response. Five patients treated for a total of 101 weeks (median 12 weeks, range 8-47 weeks) achieved stable disease as best response. Overall response rate was 1/9 (11 %) and clinical benefit rate was 4/9 (44 %). There was no statistically significant correlation between response and post-treatment change in levels of the mTOR pathway biomarkers, CTCs, HER2 CTCs, or CECs. Sirolimus 6 mg administered daily with trastuzumab appears to be well tolerated in patients with metastatic HER2-positive breast cancer following disease progression on prior trastuzumab therapy, with evidence of disease activity. mTOR inhibition may overcome resistance to trastuzumab in some HER2-positive tumors.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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