Medical management of soft tissue sarcomas (STS) has been restricted by the limited availability of active drugs. A plethora of new oncologic agents are now available, many of which have specific therapeutic targets. Gemcitabine and docetaxel is a combination of drugs that have limited single-agent activity. Yondelis, a novel chemotherapeutic that binds DNA and functions partially by inhibiting transcription, is being tested alone and in combination with doxorubicin. Inhibitors of mTOR, a serine/threonine kinase that regulates cell cycle activation and cell growth, are also being tested. Growth factor receptor inhibitors are being evaluated in a variety of sarcomas that have been found to express the targets. In addition, a variety of agents are being assessed in gastrointestinal stromal tumors (GIST). Single agents and agents combined with imatinib are being tested in imatinib-refractory and in metastatic GIST. The increased use of targeted agents underscores the need for understanding sarcoma biology.
Margaret von Mehren
Sujana Movva, Margaret von Mehren, Eric A. Ross, and Elizabeth Handorf
Background: Conflicting data exist on the benefit of chemotherapy in the management of high-risk soft tissue sarcoma (STS). Use of chemotherapy may be dependent on patient, tumor, and facility characteristics. This study sought to identify these factors and compare survival between treatment groups. Patients and Methods: Patients with stage III STS were identified from the National Cancer Data Base (NCDB) from 1998 to 2012. Multiple logistic regression analysis was used to determine factors that influenced the probability of receiving chemotherapy. In a subset of patients, we determined the relationship between chemotherapy use and overall survival, using Kaplan-Meier curves and Cox regression analysis with propensity score adjustment. We also examined the effect of chemotherapy by histologic subgroup using interaction models. Results: A total of 16,370 patients were included (N=5,377 for survival analysis). Patients who were younger than 40 years; male; privately insured; earned a higher income; had no comorbidities; had synovial sarcoma, angiosarcoma or “other” histology; and whose tumors were high-grade, greater than 10 cm, or from the lower extremity were significantly more likely to receive chemotherapy. Median unadjusted overall survival (OS) in the nonchemotherapy and chemotherapy groups was 51.3 and 82.7 months, respectively (P<.001). On adjusted analysis, the survival benefit remained significant (hazard ratio [HR], 0.85; P=.004). The benefit was particularly strong in the undifferentiated pleomorphic sarcoma (UPS) group on adjustment, with a median OS of 49.1 and 77.8 months for nonchemotherapy versus chemotherapy, respectively (HR, 0.77; P=.02). Conclusions: In addition to expected tumor and patient factors, histology, location of primary tumor, and socioeconomic status are associated with receipt/nonreceipt of chemotherapy in stage III STS. Chemotherapy use was associated with improved OS in the overall population, and specifically in the UPS subgroup.
Martin J. Edelman, Crystal S. Denlinger, Eric A. Ross, and Margaret von Mehren
Caitlin R. Meeker, Yu-Ning Wong, Brian L. Egleston, Michael J. Hall, Elizabeth R. Plimack, Lainie P. Martin, Margaret von Mehren, Bianca R. Lewis, and Daniel M. Geynisman
Background: Although financial distress is commonly recognized in patients with cancer, it may be more prevalent in younger adults. This study sought to evaluate disparities in overall and financial distress in patients with cancer as a function of age. Methods: This was a single-center cross-sectional study of patients with solid malignancies requiring cancer therapy. The patient questionnaire included demographics, financial concerns, and measures of overall and financial distress. Data analyses compared patients in 3 age groups: young (<50 years), middle-aged (50–64 years), and elderly (≥65 years). Results: The cohort included 119 patients (median age, 62 years; 52% female; 84% white; 100% insured; 36% income ≥$75,000). Significant financial concerns included paying rent/mortgage (P=.003) and buying food (P=.032). Impact of Event Scale (IES) results revealed significant distress in 73% young, 64% middle-aged, and 44% elderly patients. The mean Distress Thermometer (DT) score was 6.1 (standard deviation [SD], 2.9) for young patients, 5.4 (SD, 2.6) for middle-aged, and 4.4 (SD, 3.3) for elderly patients. Young patients were more likely than elderly patients to have a higher IES distress score (P=.016) and DT score (P=.048). The mean InCharge score was lowest (indicating greatest financial distress) in the young group and progressed with age: 5.0 (SD, 1.9), 5.7 (SD, 2.7), and 7.4 (SD, 1.9), respectively (P<.001). Multivariable analyses revealed that the relationship between financial distress and overall distress was strongest in the middle-age group; as the DT increased by 1 point, the InCharge scores decreased by 0.52 (P<.001). Conclusions: Overall and financial distress are more common in young and middle-aged patients with cancer. There are several factors, including employment, insurance, access to paid sick leave, children, and education, that affect younger and middle-aged adults and are less of a potential stressor for elderly individuals.
George D. Demetri, Margaret von Mehren, Cristina R. Antonescu, Ronald P. DeMatteo, Kristen N. Ganjoo, Robert G. Maki, Peter W.T. Pisters, Chandrajit P. Raut, Richard F. Riedel, Scott Schuetze, Hema M. Sundar, Jonathan C. Trent, and Jeffrey D. Wayne
The standard of care for managing patients with gastrointestinal stromal tumors (GISTs) rapidly changed after the introduction of effective molecularly targeted therapies involving tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs), such as imatinib mesylate and sunitinib malate. A better understanding of the molecular characteristics of GISTs have improved the diagnostic accuracy and led to the discovery of novel immunomarkers and new mechanisms of resistance to TKI therapy, which in turn have resulted in the development of novel treatment strategies. To address these issues, the NCCN organized a task force consisting of a multidisciplinary panel of experts in the fields of medical oncology, surgical oncology, molecular diagnostics, and pathology to discuss the recent advances, identify areas of future research, and recommend an optimal approach to care for patients with GIST at all stages of disease. The task force met for the first time in October 2003 and again in December 2006 and October 2009. This supplement describes the recent developments in the field of GIST as discussed at the October 2009 meeting.
Peter F. Coccia, Jessica Altman, Smita Bhatia, Scott C. Borinstein, Joseph Flynn, Suzanne George, Robert Goldsby, Robert Hayashi, Mary S. Huang, Rebecca H. Johnson, Lynda Kwon Beaupin, Michael P. Link, Kevin C. Oeffinger, Kathleen M. Orr, Alberto S. Pappo, Damon Reed, Holly L. Spraker, Deborah A. Thomas, Margaret von Mehren, Daniel S. Wechsler, Kimberly F. Whelan, Bradley J. Zebrack, Hema Sundar, and Dorothy A. Shead
Cancer is the leading cause of death among the adolescent and young adult (AYA) population, excluding homicide, suicide, or unintentional injury. AYA patients should be managed by a multidisciplinary team of health care professionals who are well-versed in the specific developmental issues relevant to this patient population. The recommendations for age-appropriate care outlined in these NCCN Guidelines include psychosocial assessment, a discussion of infertility risks associated with treatment and options for fertility preservation, genetic and familial risk assessment for all patients after diagnosis, screening and monitoring of late effects in AYA cancer survivors after successful completion of therapy, and palliative care and end-of-life considerations for patients for whom curative therapy fails.
J. Sybil Biermann, Douglas R. Adkins, Mark Agulnik, Robert S. Benjamin, Brian Brigman, James E. Butrynski, David Cheong, Warren Chow, William T. Curry, Deborah A. Frassica, Frank J. Frassica, Kenneth R. Hande, Francis J. Hornicek, Robin L. Jones, Joel Mayerson, Sean V. McGarry, Brian McGrath, Carol D. Morris, Richard J. O'Donnell, R. Lor Randall, Victor M. Santana, Robert L. Satcher, Herrick J. Siegel, Margaret von Mehren, Mary Anne Bergman, and Hema Sundar
Primary bone cancers are extremely rare neoplasms, accounting for fewer than 0.2% of all cancers. The evaluation and treatment of patients with bone cancers requires a multidisciplinary team of physicians, including musculoskeletal, medical, and radiation oncologists, and surgeons and radiologists with demonstrated expertise in the management of these tumors. Long-term surveillance and follow-up are necessary for the management of treatment late effects related to surgery, radiation therapy, and chemotherapy. These guidelines discuss the management of chordoma, giant cell tumor of the bone, and osteosarcoma.
George D. Demetri, Scott Antonia, Robert S. Benjamin, Marilyn M. Bui, Ephraim S. Casper, Ernest U. Conrad III, Thomas F. DeLaney, Kristen N. Ganjoo, Martin J. Heslin, Raymond J. Hutchinson, John M. Kane III, G. Douglas Letson, Sean V. McGarry, Richard J. O'Donnell, I. Benjamin Paz, John D. Pfeifer, Raphael E. Pollock, R. Lor Randall, Richard F. Riedel, Karen D. Schupak, Herbert S. Schwartz, Katherine Thornton, Margaret von Mehren, and Jeffrey Wayne
Featured Updates to the NCCN Guidelines
Margaret von Mehren, John M. Kane III, Marilyn M. Bui, Edwin Choy, Mary Connelly, Sarah Dry, Kristen N. Ganjoo, Suzanne George, Ricardo J. Gonzalez, Martin J. Heslin, Jade Homsi, Vicki Keedy, Ciara M. Kelly, Edward Kim, David Liebner, Martin McCarter, Sean V. McGarry, Christian Meyer, Alberto S. Pappo, Amanda M. Parkes, I. Benjamin Paz, Ivy A. Petersen, Matthew Poppe, Richard F. Riedel, Brian Rubin, Scott Schuetze, Jacob Shabason, Jason K. Sicklick, Matthew B. Spraker, Melissa Zimel, Mary Anne Bergman, and Giby V. George
The NCCN Guidelines for Soft Tissue Sarcoma provide recommendations for the diagnosis, evaluation, treatment, and follow-up for patients with soft tissue sarcomas. These NCCN Guidelines Insights summarize the panel discussion behind recent important updates to the guidelines, including the development of a separate and distinct guideline for gastrointestinal stromal tumors (GISTs); reconception of the management of desmoid tumors; inclusion of further recommendations for the diagnosis and management of extremity/body wall, head/neck sarcomas, and retroperitoneal sarcomas; modification and addition of systemic therapy regimens for sarcoma subtypes; and revision of the principles of radiation therapy for soft tissue sarcomas.
Featured Updates to the NCCN Guidelines
Margaret von Mehren, Robert S. Benjamin, Marilyn M. Bui, Ephraim S. Casper, Ernest U. Conrad III, Thomas F. DeLaney, Kristen N. Ganjoo, Suzanne George, Ricardo Gonzalez, Martin J. Heslin, John M. Kane III, Joel Mayerson, Sean V. McGarry, Christian Meyer, Richard J. O'Donnell, Benjamin Paz, John D. Pfeifer, Raphael E. Pollock, R. Lor Randall, Richard F. Riedel, Scott Schuetze, Karen D. Schupak, Herbert S. Schwartz, Sridhar Shankar, Brian A. Van Tine, Jeffrey Wayne, Hema Sundar, and Nicole R. McMillian
The major changes to the 2012 and 2011 NCCN Guidelines for Soft Tissue Sarcoma pertain to the management of patients with gastrointestinal stromal tumors (GISTs) and desmoid tumors (aggressive fibromatosis). Postoperative imatinib following complete resection for primary GIST with no preoperative imatinib is now included as a category 1 recommendation for patients with intermediate or high risk of recurrence. The panel also reaffirmed the recommendation for preoperative use of imatinib in patients with GISTs that are resectable with negative margins but associated with significant surgical morbidity. Observation was included as an option for patients with resectable desmoid tumors that are small and asymptomatic, not causing morbidity, pain, or functional limitation. Sorafenib is included as an option for systemic therapy for patients with desmoid tumors.