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Zhong Ye, Chun Wang, Limin Guo, Juan P. Palazzo, Zhixing Han, Yinzhi Lai, Jing Jiang, James A. Posey, Atrayee Basu Mallick, Bingshan Li, Li Jiang, and Hushan Yang

Background: Use of chemotherapy in stage II colorectal cancer (CRC) is controversial because it improves survival only in some patients. We aimed to develop a statistical model using routine and readily available blood tests to predict the prognosis of patients with stage II CRC and to identify which patients are likely to benefit from chemotherapy. Methods: We divided 422 patients with stage II CRC into a training and a testing set. The association of routine laboratory variables and disease-free survival (DFS) was analyzed. A prognostic model was developed incorporating clinically relevant laboratory variables with demographic and tumor characteristics. A prognostic score was derived by calculating the sum of each variable weighted by its regression coefficient in the model. Model performance was evaluated by constructing receiver operating characteristic curves and calculating the area under the curve (AUC). Results: Significant associations were seen between 5 laboratory variables and patient DFS in univariate analyses. After stepwise selection, 3 variables (carcinoembryonic antigen, hemoglobin, creatinine) were retained in the multivariate model with an AUC of 0.75. Compared with patients with a low prognostic score, those with a medium and high prognostic score had a 1.99- and 4.78-fold increased risk of recurrence, respectively. The results from the training set were validated in the testing set. Moreover, chemotherapy significantly improved DFS in high-risk patients, but not in low- and medium-risk patients. Conclusions: A routine laboratory variable–based model may help predict DFS of patients with stage II CRC and identify high-risk patients more likely to benefit from chemotherapy.

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Bin-Yi Xiao, Xuan Zhang, Tai-Yuan Cao, Dan-Dan Li, Wu Jiang, Ling-Heng Kong, Jing-Hua Tang, Kai Han, Chen-Zhi Zhang, Wei-Jian Mei, Jian Xiao, Zhi-Zhong Pan, Yun-Feng Li, Xiao-Shi Zhang, and Pei-Rong Ding

Background: Our study aimed to evaluate the efficacy and feasibility of neoadjuvant anti–PD-1 treatment for localized mismatch repair–deficient (dMMR) colorectal cancer (CRC). Patients and Methods: The study cohort included patients with localized dMMR CRC who received PD-1 inhibitors as neoadjuvant therapy from 3 medical centers in Southern China. Main eligibility criteria included age between 18 and 75 years, ECOG performance status of 0 or 1, and receipt of ≥2 doses of PD-1 inhibitors. Results: A total of 73 patients were included. Most of the tumors were locally advanced, including 19 (26.0%) T4a and 29 (39.7%) T4b. Most patients (79.5%) received PD-1 inhibitor monotherapy. Objective response per radiologic assessment was achieved in 62 (84.9%) patients, including 17 (23.3%) with complete response (CR) and 45 (61.6%) with partial response, with a median time to response of 9.6 weeks. Patients with T4a/4b disease had a similar response rate as those with T2–3 disease (84.0% vs 85.4%; P=.999). As of writing, a total of 50 patients have undergone surgery. Pathologic CR was achieved in most (57.1%) patients and remained high (59.5%) even among the 38 patients with T4a/4b disease. The 17 patients with CR did not undergo surgery and adopted a watch-and-wait strategy. After a median follow-up of 17.2 months (range, 3.4–45.1 months), the overall median recurrence-free and overall survivals were not reached. Among patients undergoing surgery or achieving CR, the 2-year tumor-specific disease-free and overall survival rates were both 100%. During neoadjuvant treatment, grade 3–4 adverse events occurred in 8 patients; 4 required acute intervention. Severe postoperative complications were recorded in 4 patients, 3 of whom required a second surgery. Conclusions: Neoadjuvant therapy with PD-1 blockade is highly effective for localized dMMR CRC, with an acceptable safety profile and low recurrence rate. This treatment holds promise for becoming the new standard of care for localized dMMR CRCs.

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Rongbo Lin, Jinfeng Zhu, Yushuang Luo, Xia Lv, Mingqian Lu, Haihui Chen, Huichao Zou, Zhichun Zhang, Shaowei Lin, Milu Wu, Xiaofeng Li, Min Zhou, Shen Zhao, Liyu Su, Jiang Liu, and Cheng Huang

Background: Optimal analgesic maintenance for severe cancer pain is unknown. This study evaluated the efficacy and safety of intravenous patient-controlled analgesia (IPCA) with continuous infusion plus rescue dose or bolus-only dose versus conventional oral extended-release morphine as a background dose with normal-release morphine as a rescue dose to maintain analgesia in patients with severe cancer pain after successful opioid titration. Methods: Patients with persistent severe cancer pain (≥7 at rest on the 11-point numeric rating scale [NRS]) were randomly assigned to 1 of 3 treatment arms: (A1) IPCA hydromorphone with bolus-only dose where dosage was 10% to 20% of the total equianalgesic over the previous 24 hours (TEOP24H) administered as needed, (A2) IPCA hydromorphone with continuous infusion where dose per hour was the TEOP24H divided by 24 and bolus dosage for breakthrough pain was 10% to 20% of the TEOP24H, and (B) oral extended-release morphine based on TEOP24H/2 × 75% (because of incomplete cross-tolerance) every 12 hours plus normal-release morphine based on TEOP24H × 10% to 20% for breakthrough pain. After randomization, patients underwent IPCA hydromorphone titration for 24 hours to achieve pain control before beginning their assigned treatment. The primary endpoint was NRS over days 1 to 3. Results: A total of 95 patients from 9 oncology study sites underwent randomization: 30 into arm A1, 32 into arm A2, and 33 into arm B. Arm B produced a significantly higher NRS over days 1 to 3 compared with arm A1 or A2 (P<.001). Daily NRS from day 1 to day 6 and patient satisfaction scores on day 3 and day 6 were worse in arm B. Median equivalent-morphine consumption increase was significantly lower in A1 (P=.024) among the 3 arms. No severe adverse event occurred in any arm. Conclusions: Compared with oral morphine maintenance, IPCA hydromorphone for analgesia maintenance improves control of severe cancer pain after successful titration. Furthermore, IPCA hydromorphone without continuous infusion may consume less opioid.