Background: Dermatofibrosarcoma protuberans (DFSP) is a rare soft tissue sarcoma of the skin characterized by the presence of specific COL1A1-PDGFB fusion protein, which appears as a consequence of the t(17;22) (q22;q13) translocation.
Objective: The aim of the study was to perform an analysis of patients with advanced DFSP treated with imatinib, with or without surgery, in clinical practice outside trials.
Patients and methods: We analysed the data of 15 patients (6 male, 9 female; median age 56 years) with locally advanced/initially inoperable and/or metastatic DFSP treated with imatinib 400-800 mg daily between 12/2004 and 06/2009. All diagnoses were ascertained cytogenetically (fluorescent in situ hybridization). Median follow-up time was 16 months (range: 4-81).
Results: Metastases were present in six cases (two lungs, two soft tissue, two lymph nodes). Fibrosarcomatous transformation (FS-DFSP) was confirmed in seven patients (47%). A 2-year progression-free survival (PFS) rate was 60%, and a 2-year overall survival (OS) rate was 78% (median time for PFS/OS was not reached). The best overall responses were: 10 partial responses (67%, including 5 FS-DFSP-1 progressed during the follow-up), 2 stable diseases (13%) and 3 progressive diseases (20%). Seven patients (47%) underwent resection of residual disease and remained free of disease.
Conclusions: We have confirmed the profound anti-tumour effect of imatinib in DFSP harbouring t(17;22) with long-term responses. Imatinib therapy may in some cases lead to tumour resectability of lesser disfiguration.
© 2010 The Authors. Journal of the European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology © 2010 European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology.