Conference Coverage

Predicting treatment response in leiomyosarcoma, liposarcoma



Aberrations in oncogenic pathways and immune modulation influence treatment response in patients with metastatic leiomyosarcoma or liposarcoma, based on an analysis of whole-exome sequencing of tumor samples from patients in a completed phase 3 randomized trial comparing trabectedin and dacarbazine.

In that trial, trabectedin benefit was mostly seen in patients with leiomyosarcoma, as well as in patients with myxoid/round cell sarcomas, and less so in those with dedifferentiated and pleomorphic liposarcomas.

Gurpreet Kapoor, PhD, of LabConnect, Seattle, and colleagues examined aberrations in oncogenic pathways (DNA damage response, PI3K, MDM2-p53) and in immune modulation and then correlated the genomic aberrations with prospective data on clinical outcomes in the trial.

For the study, presented at the annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology in Chicago, archival tumor samples were collected from 456 of the 518 patients; 180 had uterine leiomyosarcomas, 149 had nonuterine leiomyosarcomas, 66 had dedifferentiated liposarcomas, 46 had myxoid liposarcomas, and 15 had pleomorphic liposarcomas.

Peripheral blood samples from a subset of 346 patients were also analyzed as matched normal to filter noise from nonpathogenic variants in the whole-exome sequencing.

Consistent with sarcoma data from The Cancer Genome Atlas, frequent homozygous gene deletions with relatively low mutational load were noted in these leiomyosarcoma and liposarcoma samples. TP53 and RB1 alterations were more frequent in leiomyosarcomas than in liposarcomas and were not associated with clinical outcomes. Analyses of 103 DNA damage-response genes found somatic alterations exceeded 20% across subtypes and correlated with improved progression-free survival in only uterine leiomyosarcomas (hazard ratio, 0.63; P = .03).

Genomic alterations in PI3K pathway genes were noted in 30% of myxoid liposarcomas and were associated with a worse rate of progression-free survival (HR, 3.0; P = .045).

A trend towards better overall survival was noted in dedifferentiated liposarcoma patients with MDM2 amplification as compared with normal MDM2 copy number.

Certain subtype-specific genomic aberrations in immune modulation pathways were associated with worse clinical outcomes in patients with uterine leiomyosarcoma or dedifferentiated liposarcoma. Alterations in immune suppressors were associated with improved clinical outcomes in nonuterine leiomyosarcomas and alterations in lipid metabolism were associated with improved clinical outcomes in dedifferentiated liposarcomas.

The invited discussant for the study, Mark Andrew Dickson, MD, of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, New York, noted that “the real take-home here is that the TMBs (tumor mutation burdens) are relatively low across all of the L-type sarcomas.

“The pattern and prevalence of genomic aberrations that we’re seeing in this cohort of patients prospectively analyzed on a clinical trial are consistent with prior reports. ... including CDK4 and MDM2 in dedifferentiated liposarcoma, PI3-kinase in some myxoid/round cells, p53 in leiomyosarcoma and liposarcoma, and so on.”

Generally, tumor mutation burden is low in L-type sarcomas, and there are some intriguing associations with benefit to therapies, such as PI3-kinase pathway and potential resistance to trabectedin and high tumor mutation burden and potential sensitivity to trabectedin, that need to be explored and validated in another larger cohort, he said.

“I also am increasingly coming to terms with the fact that the tumors like leiomyosarcoma, which have low tumor mutation burden, and which so far have proven fairly immune to immunotherapy, based on all of the negative PD-1 data that we’ve seen, and that also have recurrent, relatively unactionable mutations, like p53 and Rb, remain very difficult to treat,” Dr. Dickson concluded.

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SOURCE: Kapoor G et al. ASCO 2018, Abstract 11513.

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