INTRODUCTION: The relationship between the EGFR gene mutation status and clinical outcome has not fully been assessed in patients with non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) who received cytotoxic agents. The aim of this study was to clarify its association. We also examined whether this association could be affected by previous gefitinib treatment. METHODS: Patients with advanced or postoperative recurrent NSCLC who received both cytotoxic chemotherapy and gefitinib monotherapy in their treatment course were included in this study. An EGFR mutation was determined in exons 19 and 21 by direct sequencing. RESULTS: Of 194 Japanese patients with advanced or relapsed NSCLC assessable for mutation analysis, 60 received both cytotoxic chemotherapy and gefitinib monotherapy through their treatment courses. EGFR mutations significantly affected progression-free survival (PFS) in the first-line cytotoxic chemotherapy regimens in the multivariate analysis (hazard ratio for PFS = 0.422; p = 0.0422). In contrast, in 28 (47%) of the 60 patients who also received cytotoxic chemotherapy after the relapse to gefitinib monotherapy, there were no differences in PFS stratified by EGFR mutation status. The sensitivity to gefitinib was, however, correlated with EGFR mutation status, and its sensitivity was retained even in the second-line treatment setting in patients with EGFR mutations. CONCLUSIONS: EGFR mutations were therefore significantly associated with a better PFS in the first-line cytotoxic chemotherapy regimens. However, its association was not observed in the cytotoxic regimens administered after the relapse to gefitinib monotherapy, whereas gefitinib sensitivity was associated with an EGFR mutation even in the second-line or later treatment settings.
- EGFR mutation
- Lung cancer
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine