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BACKGROUND - Immune checkpoint inhibitors (ICIs) have substantially improved clinical outcomes in multiple cancer types and are increasingly being used in early disease settings and in combinations of different immunotherapies. However, ICIs can also cause severe or fatal immune-related adverse-events (irAEs). We aimed to identify and characterise cardiovascular irAEs that are significantly associated with ICIs.
METHODS - In this observational, retrospective, pharmacovigilance study, we used VigiBase, WHO's global database of individual case safety reports, to compare cardiovascular adverse event reporting in patients who received ICIs (ICI subgroup) with this reporting in the full database. This study included all cardiovascular irAEs classified by group queries according to the Medical Dictionary for Regulatory Activities, between inception on Nov 14, 1967, and Jan 2, 2018. We evaluated the association between ICIs and cardiovascular adverse events using the reporting odds ratio (ROR) and the information component (IC). IC is an indicator value for disproportionate Bayesian reporting that compares observed and expected values to find associations between drugs and adverse events. IC is the lower end of the IC 95% credibility interval, and an IC value of more than zero is deemed significant. This study is registered with ClinicalTrials.gov, number NCT03387540.
FINDINGS - We identified 31 321 adverse events reported in patients who received ICIs and 16 343 451 adverse events reported in patients treated with any drugs (full database) in VigiBase. Compared with the full database, ICI treatment was associated with higher reporting of myocarditis (5515 reports for the full database vs 122 for ICIs, ROR 11·21 [95% CI 9·36-13·43]; IC 3·20), pericardial diseases (12 800 vs 95, 3·80 [3·08-4·62]; IC 1·63), and vasculitis (33 289 vs 82, 1·56 [1·25-1·94]; IC 0·03), including temporal arteritis (696 vs 18, 12·99 [8·12-20·77]; IC 2·59) and polymyalgia rheumatica (1709 vs 16, 5·13 [3·13-8·40]; IC 1·33). Pericardial diseases were reported more often in patients with lung cancer (49 [56%] of 87 patients), whereas myocarditis (42 [41%] of 103 patients) and vasculitis (42 [60%] of 70 patients) were more commonly reported in patients with melanoma (χ test for overall subgroup comparison, p<0·0001). Vision was impaired in five (28%) of 18 patients with temporal arteritis. Cardiovascular irAEs were severe in the majority of cases (>80%), with death occurring in 61 (50%) of 122 myocarditis cases, 20 (21%) of 95 pericardial disease cases, and five (6%) of 82 vasculitis cases (χ test for overall comparison between pericardial diseases, myocarditis, and vasculitis, p<0·0001).
INTERPRETATION - Treatment with ICIs can lead to severe and disabling inflammatory cardiovascular irAEs soon after commencement of therapy. In addition to life-threatening myocarditis, these toxicities include pericardial diseases and temporal arteritis with a risk of blindness. These events should be considered in patient care and in combination clinical trial designs (ie, combinations of different immunotherapies as well as immunotherapies and chemotherapy).
FUNDING - The Cancer Institut Thématique Multi-Organisme of the French National Alliance for Life and Health Sciences (AVIESAN) Plan Cancer 2014-2019; US National Cancer Institute, National Institutes of Health; the James C. Bradford Jr. Melanoma Fund; and the Melanoma Research Foundation.
Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Immune checkpoint inhibitors are a new class of anticancer therapies that amplify T-cell-mediated immune responses against cancer cells. Immune checkpoint inhibitors have shown important benefits in phase 3 trials, and several agents have been approved for specific malignancies. Although adverse events from immune checkpoint inhibitors are a common occurrence, cardiotoxic effects are uncommon, but are often serious complications with a relatively high mortality. Most cardiotoxic effects appear to be inflammatory in nature. Clinical assessment of a combination of biomarkers, electrocardiography, cardiac imaging, and endomyocardial biopsy can be used to confirm a possible diagnosis. In this Review, we discuss the epidemiology of immune checkpoint inhibitor-mediated cardiotoxic effects, as well as their clinical presentation, subtypes, risk factors, pathophysiology, and clinical management, including the introduction of a new surveillance strategy.
Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
BACKGROUND - Myocarditis is an uncommon, but potentially fatal, toxicity of immune checkpoint inhibitors (ICI). Myocarditis after ICI has not been well characterized.
OBJECTIVES - The authors sought to understand the presentation and clinical course of ICI-associated myocarditis.
METHODS - After observation of sporadic ICI-associated myocarditis cases, the authors created a multicenter registry with 8 sites. From November 2013 to July 2017, there were 35 patients with ICI-associated myocarditis, who were compared to a random sample of 105 ICI-treated patients without myocarditis. Covariates of interest were extracted from medical records including the occurrence of major adverse cardiac events (MACE), defined as the composite of cardiovascular death, cardiogenic shock, cardiac arrest, and hemodynamically significant complete heart block.
RESULTS - The prevalence of myocarditis was 1.14% with a median time of onset of 34 days after starting ICI (interquartile range: 21 to 75 days). Cases were 65 ± 13 years of age, 29% were female, and 54% had no other immune-related side effects. Relative to controls, combination ICI (34% vs. 2%; p < 0.001) and diabetes (34% vs. 13%; p = 0.01) were more common in cases. Over 102 days (interquartile range: 62 to 214 days) of median follow-up, 16 (46%) developed MACE; 38% of MACE occurred with normal ejection fraction. There was a 4-fold increased risk of MACE with troponin T of ≥1.5 ng/ml (hazard ratio: 4.0; 95% confidence interval: 1.5 to 10.9; p = 0.003). Steroids were administered in 89%, and lower steroids doses were associated with higher residual troponin and higher MACE rates.
CONCLUSIONS - Myocarditis after ICI therapy may be more common than appreciated, occurs early after starting treatment, has a malignant course, and responds to higher steroid doses.
Copyright © 2018 American College of Cardiology Foundation. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Patients with multiple myeloma (MM) have improved treatment options, including immunomodulatory drugs (IMiDs) and proteasome inhibitors (PIs). Despite their efficacy, increased rates of cardiovascular (CV) complications occur in patients exposed to some of these therapies. While previous research has focused on identifying the toxicities inherent to each specific agent, the CV side effects may be potentiated by the combination of PIs and IMiDs plus dexamethasone. We present a patient with MM with recurrent cardiotoxicity only when exposed to combination PI and IMiD-based therapy. We also review the literature in this context, and propose a potential algorithm for cardiotoxicity prevention in this population.
© 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
De novo and acquired resistance, which are largely attributed to genetic alterations, are barriers to effective anti-epidermal-growth-factor-receptor (EGFR) therapy. To generate cetuximab-resistant cells, we exposed cetuximab-sensitive colorectal cancer cells to cetuximab in three-dimensional culture. Using whole-exome sequencing and transcriptional profiling, we found that the long non-coding RNA MIR100HG and two embedded microRNAs, miR-100 and miR-125b, were overexpressed in the absence of known genetic events linked to cetuximab resistance. MIR100HG, miR-100 and miR-125b overexpression was also observed in cetuximab-resistant colorectal cancer and head and neck squamous cell cancer cell lines and in tumors from colorectal cancer patients that progressed on cetuximab. miR-100 and miR-125b coordinately repressed five Wnt/β-catenin negative regulators, resulting in increased Wnt signaling, and Wnt inhibition in cetuximab-resistant cells restored cetuximab responsiveness. Our results describe a double-negative feedback loop between MIR100HG and the transcription factor GATA6, whereby GATA6 represses MIR100HG, but this repression is relieved by miR-125b targeting of GATA6. These findings identify a clinically actionable, epigenetic cause of cetuximab resistance.
Monoclonal antibodies targeting the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR), cetuximab and panitumumab, are a mainstay of metastatic colorectal cancer (mCRC) treatment. However, a significant number of patients suffer from primary or acquired resistance. RAS mutations are negative predictors of clinical efficacy of anti-EGFR antibodies in patients with mCRC. Oncogenic RAS activates the MAPK and PI3K/AKT pathways, which are considered the main effectors of resistance. However, the relative impact of these pathways in RAS-mutant CRC is less defined. A better mechanistic understanding of RAS-mediated resistance may guide development of rational intervention strategies. To this end we developed cancer models for functional dissection of resistance to anti-EGFR therapy in vitro and in vivo. To selectively activate MAPK- or AKT-signaling we expressed conditionally activatable RAF-1 and AKT in cancer cells. We found that either pathway independently protected sensitive cancer models against anti-EGFR antibody treatment in vitro and in vivo. RAF-1- and AKT-mediated resistance was associated with increased expression of anti-apoptotic BCL-2 proteins. Biomarkers of MAPK and PI3K/AKT pathway activation correlated with inferior outcome in a cohort of mCRC patients receiving cetuximab-based therapy. Dual pharmacologic inhibition of PI3K and MEK successfully sensitized primary resistant CRC models to anti-EGFR therapy. In conclusion, combined targeting of MAPK and PI3K/AKT signaling, but not single pathways, may be required to enhance the efficacy of anti-EGFR antibody therapy in patients with RAS-mutated CRC as well as in RAS wild type tumors with clinical resistance.
We previously reported that single cells from a human colorectal cancer (CRC) cell line (HCA-7) formed either hollow single-layered polarized cysts or solid spiky masses when plated in 3D in type-I collagen. To begin in-depth analyses into whether clonal cysts and spiky masses possessed divergent properties, individual colonies of each morphology were isolated and expanded. The lines thus derived faithfully retained their parental cystic and spiky morphologies and were termed CC (cystic) and SC (spiky), respectively. Although both CC and SC expressed EGF receptor (EGFR), the EGFR-neutralizing monoclonal antibody, cetuximab, strongly inhibited growth of CC, whereas SC was resistant to growth inhibition, and this was coupled to increased tyrosine phosphorylation of MET and RON. Addition of the dual MET/RON tyrosine kinase inhibitor, crizotinib, restored cetuximab sensitivity in SC. To further characterize these two lines, we performed comprehensive genomic and transcriptomic analysis of CC and SC in 3D. One of the most up-regulated genes in CC was the tumor suppressor , and the most up-regulated gene in SC was () in 3D and xenografts. Analysis of a CRC tissue microarray showed that epithelial, but not stromal, VCAN staining strongly correlated with reduced survival, and combined epithelial VCAN and absent HPGD staining portended a poorer prognosis. Thus, with this 3D system, we have identified a mode of cetuximab resistance and a potential prognostic marker in CRC. As such, this represents a potentially powerful system to identify additional therapeutic strategies and disease-relevant genes in CRC and possibly other solid tumors.
Therapeutic antibodies blocking programmed death-1 and its ligand (PD-1/PD-L1) induce durable responses in a substantial fraction of melanoma patients. We sought to determine whether the number and/or type of mutations identified using a next-generation sequencing (NGS) panel available in the clinic was correlated with response to anti-PD-1 in melanoma. Using archival melanoma samples from anti-PD-1/PD-L1-treated patients, we performed hybrid capture-based NGS on 236-315 genes and T-cell receptor (TCR) sequencing on initial and validation cohorts from two centers. Patients who responded to anti-PD-1/PD-L1 had higher mutational loads in an initial cohort (median, 45.6 vs. 3.9 mutations/MB; P = 0.003) and a validation cohort (37.1 vs. 12.8 mutations/MB; P = 0.002) compared with nonresponders. Response rate, progression-free survival, and overall survival were superior in the high, compared with intermediate and low, mutation load groups. Melanomas with NF1 mutations harbored high mutational loads (median, 62.7 mutations/MB) and high response rates (74%), whereas BRAF/NRAS/NF1 wild-type melanomas had a lower mutational load. In these archival samples, TCR clonality did not predict response. Mutation numbers in the 315 genes in the NGS platform strongly correlated with those detected by whole-exome sequencing in The Cancer Genome Atlas samples, but was not associated with survival. In conclusion, mutational load, as determined by an NGS platform available in the clinic, effectively stratified patients by likelihood of response. This approach may provide a clinically feasible predictor of response to anti-PD-1/PD-L1. Cancer Immunol Res; 4(11); 959-67. ©2016 AACR.
©2016 American Association for Cancer Research.