JAMA Oncol 2020 Aug;6(8):1241-1246
Helios Klinikum Berlin-Buch, Sarkomzentrum Berlin-Brandenburg, Berlin, Germany.
Importance: Adjuvant imatinib is associated with improved recurrence-free survival (RFS) when administered after surgery to patients with operable gastrointestinal stromal tumor (GIST), but its influence on overall survival (OS) has remained uncertain.
Objective: To evaluate the effect of adjuvant imatinib on OS of patients who have a high estimated risk for GIST recurrence after macroscopically complete surgery.
Design, Setting, And Participants: In this open-label, randomized (1:1), multicenter phase 3 clinical trial conducted in Finland, Germany, Norway, and Sweden, 400 patients who had undergone macroscopically complete surgery for GIST with a high estimated risk for recurrence according to the modified National Institutes of Health Consensus Criteria were enrolled between February 2004 and September 2008. Data for this follow-up analysis were analyzed from September to November, 2019.
Interventions: Imatinib 400 mg/d administered orally for either 12 months or 36 months after surgery.
Main Outcomes And Measures: The primary end point was RFS; the secondary objectives included OS and treatment safety.
Results: The intention-to-treat cohort consisted of 397 patients (12-month group, 199; 36-month group, 198; 201 men and 196 women; median [IQR] age, 62 (51-69) years and 60 (51-67) years, during a median follow-up time of 119 months after the date of randomization, 194 RFS events and 96 OS events were recorded in the intention-to-treat population. Five-year and 10-year RFS was 71.4% and 52.5%, respectively, in the 36-month group and 53.0% and 41.8% in the 12-month group (hazard ratio [HR], 0.66; 95% CI, 0.49-0.87; P = .003). In the 36-month group, 5-year OS and 10-year OS rates were 92.0% and 79.0%, respectively, and in the 12-month group 85.5% and 65.3% (HR, 0.55; 95% CI, 0.37-0.83; P = .004). The results were similar in the efficacy population, from which 15 patients who did not have GIST in central pathology review and 24 patients who had intra-abdominal metastases removed at surgery were excluded (36-month group, 10-year OS 81.6%; 12-month group, 66.8%; HR, 0.50; 95% CI, 0.32-0.80; P = .003). No new safety signals were detected.
Conclusions And Relevance: Three years of adjuvant imatinib is superior in efficacy compared with 1 year of imatinib. Approximately 50% of deaths may be avoided during the first 10 years of follow-up after surgery with longer adjuvant imatinib treatment.
Trial Registration: ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT00116935.