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Studies for Better Treatment of Patients with Glioma
Linköping University, Department of Clinical and Experimental Medicine, Division of Cell Biology. Linköping University, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-8410-4939
2019 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

In Sweden annually over 500 people will be diagnosed with the malignant brain tumor glioma. They are graded from I-IV. The majority are glioblastoma (grade IV) (GBM), these being the most aggressive type. Median survival for those treated with standard of care is expected to be around 15 months. This tumor will mainly affect those 60 years or older.

The studies in this thesis focus on treatment of patients with malignant gliomas grade III and IV. The aim of the studies is to improve the care of glioma patients. Papers I and II explored different therapeutic options in randomized trials, to facilitate individualized treatment recommendations. Findings from studies I and II, together with additional trials, demonstrated the importance of analyzing the tumor marker O6-methylguanine DNA methyltransferase (MGMT) methylation status for survival of GBM patients treated with Temozolomide (TMZ). The third paper investigated how the analysis of this marker is implemented internationally.

The first study (paper I, Nordic trial) investigated treatment options for patients 60 years or older with GBM. The trial compared standard radiotherapy (SRT) over 6 weeks versus hypofractionated radiotherapy (HRT) over 2 weeks versus single agent TMZ administered in up to six 4 weekly cycles. In all, 342 patients were included in the trial. This study demonstrated that those randomized to TMZ had superior survival as compared to SRT. In addition, quality of life (QoL) data also suggested a better QoL for TMZ treatment than for radiotherapy. The benefit of TMZ treatment seemed to be limited to those with the tumor molecular marker MGMT methylated (inactivated).

The second trial (paper II, Neoadjuvant trial) studied whether integrating TMZ treatment with SRT for patients younger than 60 years with GBM (grade IV) and astrocytoma grade III would confer a survival benefit, if administered postoperatively, before the start of SRT (neoadjuvant). TMZ was provided for 2-3 four weekly cycles followed by SRT to patients randomized to neoadjuvant treatment and was compared to postoperative SRT alone. Although this trial could not illustrate any advantage of delaying the start of SRT while administering TMZ for the study cohort in general, for those included as astrocytoma grade III the median survival was found to be superior by 5 years when randomized to neoadjuvant TMZ. This trial also confirmed the importance of MGMT promoter methylation for the efficacy of TMZ.

The third study (paper III) investigated international practices for analyzing tumor MGMT promoter methylation status. MGMT analysis can be conducted by various laboratory methods, which in some cases can provide opposing results regarding the MGMT methylation status of the patient´s tumor. This can lead to incorrect treatment recommendations. To establish which methods and cut-offs that are regularly used to determine tumor MGMT status in the clinic, an international survey was provided to those working in the field. We also inquired about opinions regarding an international consensus on how MGMT should be tested. The 152 respondents reported several methodologies and different cut-off levels also for the same method. A majority of respondents warrant international guidelines.

In conclusion, the results of the 2 randomized trials contribute to individualized treatment recommendations for patients affected by GBM or astrocytoma grade III. The results of the survey regarding analyses of MGMT clarify the current problematic situation. The request of the respondents regarding international guidelines might contribute to their future development, so that personalized treatment recommendations can be improved.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Linköping: Linköping University Electronic Press, 2019. , p. 73
Series
Linköping University Medical Dissertations, ISSN 0345-0082 ; 1709
National Category
Medical Bioscience Clinical Laboratory Medicine Cancer and Oncology Surgery Nursing Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-161677DOI: 10.3384/diss.diva-161677ISBN: 9789179299798 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-161677DiVA, id: diva2:1368114
Public defence
2019-11-22, Linden, Campus US, Linköping, 13:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Funder
Medical Research Council of Southeast Sweden (FORSS)Swedish Cancer SocietyRegion Östergötland
Note

Supporter of this thesis not mentioned above are LiUCancer and NSC research grant; Linköping University Hospital for Neuro-research, Lion's Cancer Foundation, Cancer Foundation Norrland and Rotary Borgholm research grant.

Available from: 2019-11-06 Created: 2019-11-06 Last updated: 2019-12-04Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. Temozolomide versus standard 6-week radiotherapy versus hypofractionated radiotherapy in patients older than 60 years with glioblastoma: the Nordic randomised, phase 3 trial
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Temozolomide versus standard 6-week radiotherapy versus hypofractionated radiotherapy in patients older than 60 years with glioblastoma: the Nordic randomised, phase 3 trial
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2012 (English)In: The Lancet Oncology, ISSN 1470-2045, E-ISSN 1474-5488, Vol. 13, no 9, p. 916-926Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Background Most patients with glioblastoma are older than 60 years, but treatment guidelines are based on trials in patients aged only up to 70 years. We did a randomised trial to assess the optimum palliative treatment in patients aged 60 years and older with glioblastoma. less thanbrgreater than less thanbrgreater thanMethods Patients with newly diagnosed glioblastoma were recruited from Austria, Denmark, France, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, and Turkey. They were assigned by a computer-generated randomisation schedule, stratified by centre, to receive temozolomide (200 mg/m(2) on days 1-5 of every 28 days for up to six cycles), hypofractionated radiotherapy (34.0 Gy administered in 3.4 Gy fractions over 2 weeks), or standard radiotherapy (60.0 Gy administered in 2.0 Gy fractions over 6 weeks). Patients and study staff were aware of treatment assignment. The primary endpoint was overall survival. Analyses were done by intention to treat. This trial is registered, number ISRCTN81470623. less thanbrgreater than less thanbrgreater thanFindings 342 patients were enrolled, of whom 291 were randomised across three treatment groups (temozolomide n=93, hypofractionated radiotherapy n=98, standard radiotherapy n=100) and 51 of whom were randomised across only two groups (temozolomide n=26, hypofractionated radiotherapy n=25). In the three-group randomisation, in comparison with standard radiotherapy, median overall survival was significantly longer with temozolomide (8.3 months [95% CI 7.1-9.5; n=93] vs 6.0 months [95% CI 5.1-6.8; n=100], hazard ratio [HR] 0.70; 95% CI 0.52-0.93, p=0.01), but not with hypofractionated radiotherapy (7.5 months [6.5-8.6; n=98], HR 0.85 [0.64-1.12], p=0.24). For all patients who received temozolomide or hypofractionated radiotherapy (n=242) overall survival was similar (8.4 months [7.3-9.4; n=119] vs 7.4 months [6.4-8.4; n=123]; HR 0.82, 95% CI 0.63-1.06; p=0.12). For age older than 70 years, survival was better with temozolomide and with hypofractionated radiotherapy than with standard radiotherapy (HR for temozolomide vs standard radiotherapy 0.35 [0.21-0.56], pandlt;0.0001; HR for hypofractionated vs standard radiotherapy 0.59 [95% CI 0.37-0.93], p=0.02). Patients treated with temozolomide who had tumour MGMT promoter methylation had significantly longer survival than those without MGMT promoter methylation (9.7 months [95% CI 8.0-11.4] vs 6.8 months [5.9-7.7]; HR 0.56 [95% CI 0.34-0.93], p=0.02), but no difference was noted between those with methylated and unmethylated MGMT promoter treated with radiotherapy (HR 0.97 [95% CI 0.69-1.38]; p=0.81). As expected, the most common grade 3-4 adverse events in the temozolomide group were neutropenia (n=12) and thrombocytopenia (n=18). Grade 3-5 infections in all randomisation groups were reported in 18 patients. Two patients had fatal infections (one in the temozolomide group and one in the standard radiotherapy group) and one in the temozolomide group with grade 2 thrombocytopenia died from complications after surgery for a gastrointestinal bleed. less thanbrgreater than less thanbrgreater thanInterpretation Standard radiotherapy was associated with poor outcomes, especially in patients older than 70 years. Both temozolomide and hypofractionated radiotherapy should be considered as standard treatment options in elderly patients with glioblastoma. MGMT promoter methylation status might be a useful predictive marker for benefit from temozolomide.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Elsevier, 2012
National Category
Medical and Health Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-84333 (URN)10.1016/S1470-2045(12)70265-6 (DOI)000308425600019 ()
Note

Funding Agencies|Merck||Lions Cancer Research Foundation||University of Umea||Swedish Cancer Society||Schering-Plough||University of Umea, Sweden||Cancer Fonden, Sweden||

Available from: 2012-10-05 Created: 2012-10-05 Last updated: 2019-11-06
2. Postoperative neoadjuvant temozolomide before radiotherapy versus standard radiotherapy in patients 60 years or younger with anaplastic astrocytoma or glioblastoma: a randomized trial
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Postoperative neoadjuvant temozolomide before radiotherapy versus standard radiotherapy in patients 60 years or younger with anaplastic astrocytoma or glioblastoma: a randomized trial
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2017 (English)In: Acta Oncologica, ISSN 0284-186X, E-ISSN 1651-226X, Vol. 56, no 12, p. 1776-1785Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Introduction: A pilot study of temozolomide (TMZ) given before radiotherapy (RT) for anaplastic astrocytoma (AA) and glioblastoma (GBM) resulted in prolonged survival compared to historical controls receiving RT alone. We therefore investigated neoadjuvant TMZ (NeoTMZ) in a randomized trial. During enrollment, concomitant and adjuvant radio-chemotherapy with TMZ became standard treatment. The trial was amended to include concurrent TMZ.Patients and methods: Patients, after surgery for GBM or AA, age 60 years and performance status (PS) 0-2, were randomized to either 2-3 cycles of TMZ, 200mg/m(2) days 1-5 every 28 days, followed by RT 60Gy in 30 fractions or RT only. Patients without progressive disease after two TMZ cycles, received the third cycle. From March 2005, TMZ 75mg/m(2) was administered daily concomitant with RT. TMZ was recommended first-line treatment at progression. Primary endpoint was overall survival and secondary safety.Results: The study closed prematurely after enrolling 144 patients, 103 with GBM and 41 with AA. Median age was 53 years (range 24-60) and 89 (62%) were male. PS was 0-1 for 133 (92%) patients, 53 (37%) had complete surgical resection and 18 (12%) biopsy. Ninety-two (64%) received TMZ concomitant with RT. Seventy-two (50%) were randomized to neoadjuvant treatment. For the overall study population survival was 20.3 months for RT and 17.7 months for NeoTMZ (p=.76), this not reaching the primary objective. For the preplanned subgroup analysis, we found that NeoTMZ AA patients had a median survival of 95.1 months compared to 35.2 months for RT (p=.022). For patients with GBM, no difference in survival was observed (p=.10). MGMT and IDH status affected outcome.Conclusions: No advantage of NeoTMZ was noted for the overall study population or subgroup of GBM, while NeoTMZ resulted in 5 years longer median survival for patients diagnosed as AA.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
TAYLOR & FRANCIS LTD, 2017
National Category
Surgery
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-144005 (URN)10.1080/0284186X.2017.1332780 (DOI)000418118800016 ()28675067 (PubMedID)
Note

Funding Agencies|Merck; Linkoping University Hospital for Neuro-research; Lions Cancer Foundation; Cancer Foundation Norrland, Umea, Sweden; LIUCancer; South-East Sweden FORSS

Available from: 2018-01-02 Created: 2018-01-02 Last updated: 2019-11-06
3. Do we really know who has an MGMT methylated glioma?: Results of an international survey regarding use of MGMT analyses for glioma
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Do we really know who has an MGMT methylated glioma?: Results of an international survey regarding use of MGMT analyses for glioma
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2019 (English)In: Neuro-Oncology Practice, ISSN 2054-2577, p. 1-9Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Glioma O6-methylguanine-DNA methyltransferase (MGMT) promoter methylation status informs clinical decision making. Worldwide different methods and cutoff levels are used, which can lead to discordant methylation results.We conducted an international survey to clarify which methods are regularly used and why. We also explored opinions regarding international consensus on methods and cutoff.The survey had 152 respondents from 25 countries. MGMT methylation status is determined for all glioblastomas in 37% of laboratories. The most common methods are methylation-specific polymerase chain reaction (msPCR) (37%) and pyrosequencing (34%). A method is selected for simplicity (56%), cost-effectiveness (50%), and reproducibility of results (52%). For sequencing, the number of CpG sites analyzed varies from 1–3 up to more than 16. For 50% of laboratories, the company producing the kit determines which CpG sites are examined, whereas 33% select the sites themselves. Selection of cutoff is equally distributed among a cutoff defined in the literature, by the local laboratory, or by the outside laboratory performing the analysis. This cutoff varies, reported from 1% to 30%, and in 1 laboratory tumor is determined as methylated in case of 1 methylated CpG site of 17 analyzed. Some report tumors as unmethylated or weakly vs highly methylated. An international consensus on MGMT methylation method and cutoff is warranted by 66% and 76% of respondents, respectively. The method preferred would be msPCR (45%) or pyrosequencing (42%), whereas 18% suggest next-generation sequencing.Although analysis of MGMT methylation status is routine, there is controversy regarding laboratory methods and cutoff level. Most respondents favor development of international consensus guidelines.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2019
National Category
Medical Bioscience Clinical Laboratory Medicine
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-160808 (URN)10.1093/nop/npz039 (DOI)
Available from: 2019-10-09 Created: 2019-10-09 Last updated: 2019-11-06Bibliographically approved

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