Purpose: Tamoxifen is widely prescribed as adjuvant therapy in patients with early-stage breast cancer. It has been postulated that concentrations of endoxifen, the active metabolite of tamoxifen, are a better predictor of tamoxifen efficacy than CYP2D6 genotypes. Although in a retrospective study, an endoxifen threshold of 5.9 ng/mL for efficacy was described, confirmation based on prospective studies is lacking. The objective of the prospective CYPTAM (The Netherlands National Trial Register: NTR1509) study was to associate endoxifen concentrations and CYP2D6 genotypes with clinical outcome in patients with early-stage breast cancer receiving tamoxifen.
Patients and methods: From February 2008 to December 2010, patients with breast cancer treated with adjuvant tamoxifen were included. Patients could be enrolled up to a maximum of 12 months after tamoxifen initiation. Blood samples were retrieved for CYP2D6 genotyping and endoxifen measurements by Amplichip (Roche Diagnostics, Indianapolis, IN) and high-performance liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry, respectively. Endoxifen concentrations were analyzed as a continuous variable, classifying patients into quartiles and using an endoxifen threshold of 5.9 ng/mL. Endoxifen concentrations and CYP2D6 genotypes were associated with relapse-free survival (censored at the time of tamoxifen discontinuation; RFSt) by Cox regression analysis.
Results: A total of 667 pre- and postmenopausal patients were enrolled and had received tamoxifen for a median time of 0.37 years (range, 0.23 to 0.6 years) before study entry. No association was found between endoxifen concentrations and RFSt (adjusted hazard ratio, 0.991; 95% CI, 0.946 to 1.038; P = .691). Also, neither categorizing endoxifen concentrations into quartiles nor using 5.9 ng/mL as threshold altered these results. In addition, no association was found between CYP2D6 genotype and RFSt (adjusted hazard ratio, 0.929; 95% CI, 0.525 to 1.642; P = .799).
Conclusion: This prospective clinical study shows no association between endoxifen concentrations or CYP2D6 genotypes and clinical outcome in patients with early-stage breast cancer receiving adjuvant tamoxifen.