Pertuzumab Plus Trastuzumab Plus Docetaxel for Metastatic Breast Cancer

N Engl J Med. 2012 Jan 12;366(2):109-19. doi: 10.1056/NEJMoa1113216. Epub 2011 Dec 7.

Abstract

Background: The anti-human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2) humanized monoclonal antibody trastuzumab improves the outcome in patients with HER2-positive metastatic breast cancer. However, most cases of advanced disease eventually progress. Pertuzumab, an anti-HER2 humanized monoclonal antibody that inhibits receptor dimerization, has a mechanism of action that is complementary to that of trastuzumab, and combination therapy with the two antibodies has shown promising activity and an acceptable safety profile in phase 2 studies involving patients with HER2-positive breast cancer.

Methods: We randomly assigned 808 patients with HER2-positive metastatic breast cancer to receive placebo plus trastuzumab plus docetaxel (control group) or pertuzumab plus trastuzumab plus docetaxel (pertuzumab group) as first-line treatment until the time of disease progression or the development of toxic effects that could not be effectively managed. The primary end point was independently assessed progression-free survival. Secondary end points included overall survival, progression-free survival as assessed by the investigator, the objective response rate, and safety.

Results: The median progression-free survival was 12.4 months in the control group, as compared with 18.5 months in the pertuzumab group (hazard ratio for progression or death, 0.62; 95% confidence interval, 0.51 to 0.75; P<0.001). The interim analysis of overall survival showed a strong trend in favor of pertuzumab plus trastuzumab plus docetaxel. The safety profile was generally similar in the two groups, with no increase in left ventricular systolic dysfunction; the rates of febrile neutropenia and diarrhea of grade 3 or above were higher in the pertuzumab group than in the control group.

Conclusions: The combination of pertuzumab plus trastuzumab plus docetaxel, as compared with placebo plus trastuzumab plus docetaxel, when used as first-line treatment for HER2-positive metastatic breast cancer, significantly prolonged progression-free survival, with no increase in cardiac toxic effects. (Funded by F. Hoffmann-La Roche/Genentech; ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT00567190.).

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Multicenter Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized / administration & dosage*
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized / adverse effects
  • Antineoplastic Combined Chemotherapy Protocols / adverse effects
  • Antineoplastic Combined Chemotherapy Protocols / therapeutic use*
  • Breast Neoplasms / drug therapy*
  • Breast Neoplasms / mortality
  • Breast Neoplasms / pathology
  • Disease-Free Survival
  • Docetaxel
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Kaplan-Meier Estimate
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasm Metastasis
  • Receptor, ErbB-2 / antagonists & inhibitors*
  • Taxoids / administration & dosage*
  • Taxoids / adverse effects
  • Trastuzumab
  • Ventricular Dysfunction, Left / chemically induced
  • Young Adult

Substances

  • Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized
  • Taxoids
  • Docetaxel
  • Receptor, ErbB-2
  • pertuzumab
  • Trastuzumab

Associated data

  • ClinicalTrials.gov/NCT00567190