Effect of Primary Tumor Location on Second- or Later-line Treatment Outcomes in Patients With RAS Wild-type Metastatic Colorectal Cancer and All Treatment Lines in Patients With RAS Mutations in Four Randomized Panitumumab Studies

Clin Colorectal Cancer. 2018 Sep;17(3):170-178.e3. doi: 10.1016/j.clcc.2018.03.005. Epub 2018 Mar 8.


Background: The primary tumor location has a prognostic impact in metastatic colorectal cancer (mCRC). We report the results from retrospective analyses assessing the effect of tumor location on prognosis and efficacy of second- and later-line panitumumab treatment in patients with RAS wild-type (WT) mCRC and on prognosis in all lines of treatment in patients with RAS mutant (MT) mCRC.

Patients and methods: RAS WT data (n = 483) from 2 randomized phase III panitumumab trials (ClinicalTrials.gov identifiers, NCT00339183 and NCT00113763) were analyzed for treatment outcomes stratified by tumor location. The second analysis assessed the effect of tumor location in RAS MT patients (n = 1205) from 4 panitumumab studies (ClinicalTrials.gov identifiers, NCT00364013, NCT00819780, NCT00339183, and NCT00113763). Primary tumors located in the cecum to transverse colon were coded as right-sided; those located from the splenic flexure to the rectum were coded as left-sided.

Results: Of all patients, the tumor location was ascertained for 83% to 88%; 71% to 77% of patients had left-sided tumors. RAS WT patients with right-sided tumors did worse for all efficacy parameters compared with those with left-sided tumors. The patients with left-sided tumors had better outcomes with panitumumab than with the comparator treatment. Because of the low patient numbers, no conclusions could be drawn for right-sided mCRC. The prognostic effect of tumor location on survival was unclear for RAS MT patients.

Conclusion: These retrospective analyses have confirmed that RAS WT right-sided mCRC is associated with a poor prognosis, regardless of the treatment. RAS WT patients with left-sided tumors benefitted from the addition of panitumumab in second or later treatment lines. Further research is warranted to determine the optimum management of right-sided mCRC and RAS MT tumors.

Keywords: RAS WT; RAS mutant; Treatment lines; Tumor location; mCRC.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Antineoplastic Combined Chemotherapy Protocols / therapeutic use*
  • Clinical Trials, Phase III as Topic
  • Colorectal Neoplasms / drug therapy*
  • Colorectal Neoplasms / genetics
  • Colorectal Neoplasms / mortality
  • Colorectal Neoplasms / pathology
  • Exons / genetics
  • Female
  • GTP Phosphohydrolases / genetics*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Membrane Proteins / genetics*
  • Middle Aged
  • Mutation
  • Panitumumab / therapeutic use*
  • Prognosis
  • Progression-Free Survival
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins p21(ras) / genetics*
  • Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic
  • Retrospective Studies


  • KRAS protein, human
  • Membrane Proteins
  • Panitumumab
  • GTP Phosphohydrolases
  • NRAS protein, human
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins p21(ras)

Associated data

  • ClinicalTrials.gov/NCT00339183
  • ClinicalTrials.gov/NCT00113763
  • ClinicalTrials.gov/NCT00364013
  • ClinicalTrials.gov/NCT00819780