Journal Article
. 2015 Jul; 33(25):2772-9.
doi: 10.1200/JCO.2015.60.8133.

Relative Effectiveness of Letrozole Compared With Tamoxifen for Patients With Lobular Carcinoma in the BIG 1-98 Trial

Otto Metzger Filho 1 Anita Giobbie-Hurder 2 Elizabeth Mallon 2 Barry Gusterson 2 Giuseppe Viale 2 Eric P Winer 2 Beat Thürlimann 2 Richard D Gelber 2 Marco Colleoni 2 Bent Ejlertsen 2 Marc Debled 2 Karen N Price 2 Meredith M Regan 2 Alan S Coates 2 Aron Goldhirsch 2 
  • PMID: 26215945
  •     43 References
  •     44 citations


Purpose: To evaluate the relative effectiveness of letrozole compared with tamoxifen for patients with invasive ductal or lobular carcinoma.

Patients And Methods: Patients diagnosed with early-stage invasive ductal carcinoma (IDC) or classic invasive lobular carcinoma (ILC) who were randomly assigned onto the Breast International Group (BIG) 1-98 trial and who had centrally reviewed pathology data were included (N = 2,923). HER2-negative IDC and ILC were additionally classified as hormone receptor-positive with high (luminal B [LB] -like) or low (luminal A [LA] -like) proliferative activity by Ki-67 labeling index. Survival analyses were performed with weighted Cox models that used inverse probability of censoring weighted modeling.

Results: The median follow-up time was 8.1 years. In multivariable models for disease-free survival (DFS), significant interactions between treatment and histology (ILC or IDC; P = .006) and treatment and subgroup (LB like or LA like; P = .01) were observed. In the ILC subset, there was a 66% reduction in the hazard of a DFS event with letrozole for LB (hazard ratio [HR], 0.34; 95% CI, 0.21 to 0.55) and a 50% reduction for LA subtypes (HR, 0.50; 95% CI, 0.32 to 0.78). In the IDC subset, there was a significant 35% reduction in the hazard of a DFS event with letrozole for the LB subtype (HR, 0.65; 95% CI, 0.53 to 0.79), but no difference between treatments was noted for IDC and the LA subtype (HR, 0.95; 95% CI, 0.76 to 1.20).

Conclusion: The magnitude of benefit of adjuvant letrozole is greater for patients diagnosed with lobular carcinoma versus ductal carcinoma.

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