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  • Author: Pamela L. Kunz x
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Sujata Narayanan and Pamela L. Kunz

Neuroendocrine tumors (NETs) are rare epithelial neoplasms with neuroendocrine differentiation that most commonly originate in the lungs and gastrointestinal tract. Many patients have advanced disease not amenable to surgery or local management. Some tumors also secrete amines, such as serotonin, that lead to syndromes of hormone excess, such as diarrhea and flushing. Thus, management of patients with NETs often requires a dual approach, including hormone symptom management and systemic tumor control. Somatostatin analogues have long been a mainstay of managing the hormone-related symptoms, and increasing evidence also supports their use for tumor control in patients with well-differentiated NETs. This article reviews the role of somatostatin analogues in the treatment of NETs.

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Somasundaram Subramaniam, Jason A. Zell and Pamela L. Kunz

Everolimus is an mTOR inhibitor commonly used to treat metastatic pancreatic neuroendocrine tumors (pNETs) and renal cell carcinoma, and for posttransplant immunosuppression. This report presents a case of a 36-year-old man being treated with everolimus for a metastatic pNET who developed severe hypertriglyceridemia and acute pancreatitis. The incidence of hypertriglyceridemia reported in large prospective randomized trials is reviewed and the management of hypertriglyceridemic pancreatitis is discussed. Careful monitoring of triglyceride levels and dose adjustments of everolimus together with lipid-lowering therapy can allow patients to continue this medication. Because there are increasing indications for the use of everolimus, prescribing oncologists must be cognizant of the common and serious side effects.

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M. Zach Koontz, Brendan M. Visser and Pamela L. Kunz

A 36-year-old woman presented to the emergency department with black stools and syncope. Her hemoglobin was 7.0 and her red blood cells were microcytic. Upper endoscopy did not identify a clear source of bleeding, but a bulge in the third portion of the duodenum was noted. A CT scan showed a large extraintestinal mass, and follow-up esophagogastroduodenoscopy/endoscopic ultrasound with biopsy revealed a spindle cell neoplasm, consistent with gastrointestinal stromal tumor (GIST). Because of the size of the lesion and association with the superior mesenteric vein and common bile duct, she was referred to medical oncology for consideration of neoadjuvant imatinib. Neoadjuvant tyrosine kinase inhibitor therapy for GISTs is emerging as a viable treatment strategy for borderline resectable tumors, although the dose, duration, and optimal imaging modalities have not been clearly established. Recent pathologic and radiographic data have provided insight into the mechanism and kinetics of this approach. This case report presents a patient for whom surgery was facilitated using neoadjuvant imatinib.

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James I. Barnes, John K. Lin, Divya Gupta, Douglas K. Owens, Jeremy D. Goldhaber-Fiebert and Pamela L. Kunz

Background: The Controlled Study of Lanreotide Antiproliferative Response in Neuroendocrine Tumors (CLARINET) trial showed prolonged progression-free survival in patients initially treated with lanreotide versus placebo. We evaluated the cost-effectiveness of upfront lanreotide versus active surveillance with lanreotide administered after progression in patients with metastatic enteropancreatic neuroendocrine tumors (NETs), both of which are treatment options recommended in NCCN Clinical Practice Guidelines in Oncology for Neuroendocrine and Adrenal Tumors. Methods: We developed a Markov model calibrated to the CLARINET trial and its extension. We based the active surveillance strategy on the CLARINET placebo arm. We calculated incremental cost-effectiveness ratios (ICERs) in dollars per quality-adjusted life-year (QALY). We modeled lanreotide’s cost at $7,638 per 120 mg (average sales price plus 6%), used published utilities (stable disease, 0.77; progressed disease, 0.61), adopted a healthcare sector perspective and lifetime time horizon, and discounted costs and benefits at 3% annually. We examined sensitivity to survival extrapolation and modeled octreotide long-acting release (LAR) ($6,183 per 30 mg). We conducted one-way, multiway, and probabilistic sensitivity analyses. Results: Upfront lanreotide led to 5.21 QALYs and a cost of $804,600. Active surveillance followed by lanreotide after progression led to 4.84 QALYs and a cost of $590,200, giving an ICER of $578,500/QALY gained. Reducing lanreotide’s price by 95% (to $370) or 85% (to $1,128) per 120 mg would allow upfront lanreotide to reach ICERs of $100,000/QALY or $150,000/QALY. Across a range of survival curve extrapolation scenarios, pricing lanreotide at $370 to $4,000 or $1,130 to $5,600 per 120 mg would reach ICERs of $100,000/QALY or $150,000/QALY, respectively. Our findings were robust to extensive sensitivity analyses. The ICER modeling octreotide LAR is $482,700/QALY gained. Conclusions: At its current price, lanreotide is not cost-effective as initial therapy for patients with metastatic enteropancreatic NETs and should be reserved for postprogression treatment. To be cost-effective as initial therapy, the price of lanreotide would need to be lowered by 48% to 95% or 27% to 86% to reach ICERs of $100,000/QALY or $150,00/QALY, respectively.

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Matthew H. Kulke, Manisha H. Shah, Al B. Benson III, Emily Bergsland, Jordan D. Berlin, Lawrence S. Blaszkowsky, Lyska Emerson, Paul F. Engstrom, Paul Fanta, Thomas Giordano, Whitney S. Goldner, Thorvardur R. Halfdanarson, Martin J. Heslin, Fouad Kandeel, Pamela L. Kunz, Boris W. Kuvshinoff II, Christopher Lieu, Jeffrey F. Moley, Gitonga Munene, Venu G. Pillarisetty, Leonard Saltz, Julie Ann Sosa, Jonathan R. Strosberg, Jean-Nicolas Vauthey, Christopher Wolfgang, James C. Yao, Jennifer Burns and Deborah Freedman-Cass

Neuroendocrine tumors (NETs) comprise a broad family of tumors that may or may not be associated with symptoms attributable to hormonal hypersecretion. The NCCN Clinical Practice Guidelines in Oncology for Neuroendocrine Tumors discuss the diagnosis and management of both sporadic and hereditary NETs. This selection from the guidelines focuses on sporadic NETs of the pancreas, gastrointestinal tract, lung, and thymus.

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Matthew H. Kulke, Al B. Benson III, Emily Bergsland, Jordan D. Berlin, Lawrence S. Blaszkowsky, Michael A. Choti, Orlo H. Clark, Gerard M. Doherty, James Eason, Lyska Emerson, Paul F. Engstrom, Whitney S. Goldner, Martin J. Heslin, Fouad Kandeel, Pamela L. Kunz, Boris W. Kuvshinoff II, Jeffrey F. Moley, Venu G. Pillarisetty, Leonard Saltz, David E. Schteingart, Manisha H. Shah, Stephen Shibata, Jonathan R. Strosberg, Jean-Nicolas Vauthey, Rebekah White, James C. Yao, Deborah A. Freedman-Cass and Mary A. Dwyer

Neuroendocrine tumors comprise a broad family of tumors, the most common of which are carcinoid and pancreatic neuroendocrine tumors. The NCCN Neuroendocrine Tumors Guidelines discuss the diagnosis and management of both sporadic and hereditary neuroendocrine tumors. Most of the recommendations pertain to well-differentiated, low- to intermediate-grade tumors. This updated version of the NCCN Guidelines includes a new section on pathology for diagnosis and reporting and revised recommendations for the surgical management of neuroendocrine tumors of the pancreas.

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Manisha H. Shah, Whitney S. Goldner, Thorvardur R. Halfdanarson, Emily Bergsland, Jordan D. Berlin, Daniel Halperin, Jennifer Chan, Matthew H. Kulke, Al B. Benson III, Lawrence S. Blaszkowsky, Jennifer Eads, Paul F. Engstrom, Paul Fanta, Thomas Giordano, Jin He, Martin J. Heslin, Gregory P. Kalemkerian, Fouad Kandeel, Sajid A. Khan, Wajih Zaheer Kidwai, Pamela L. Kunz, Boris W. Kuvshinoff II, Christopher Lieu, Venu G. Pillarisetty, Leonard Saltz, Julie Ann Sosa, Jonathan R. Strosberg, Craig A. Sussman, Nikolaos A. Trikalinos, Nataliya A. Uboha, Jonathan Whisenant, Terence Wong, James C. Yao, Jennifer L. Burns, Ndiya Ogba and Griselda Zuccarino-Catania

The NCCN Guidelines for Neuroendocrine and Adrenal Tumors provide recommendations for the management of adult patients with neuroendocrine tumors (NETs), adrenal gland tumors, pheochromocytomas, and paragangliomas. Management of NETs relies heavily on the site of the primary NET. These NCCN Guidelines Insights summarize the management options and the 2018 updates to the guidelines for locoregional advanced disease, and/or distant metastasis originating from gastrointestinal tract, bronchopulmonary, and thymus primary NETs.