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Capecitabine Versus Active Monitoring in Stable or Responding Metastatic Colorectal Cancer After 16 Weeks of First-Line Therapy: Results of the Randomized FOCUS4-N Trial

Adams, RA; Fisher, DJ; Graham, J; Seligmann, JF; Seymour, M; Kaplan, R; Yates, E; ... FOCUS4 Trial Investigators; + view all (2021) Capecitabine Versus Active Monitoring in Stable or Responding Metastatic Colorectal Cancer After 16 Weeks of First-Line Therapy: Results of the Randomized FOCUS4-N Trial. Journal of clinical oncology: official journal of the American Society of Clinical Oncology 10.1200/JCO.21.01436. (In press). Green open access

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Abstract

PURPOSE: Despite extensive randomized evidence supporting the use of treatment breaks in metastatic colorectal cancer (mCRC), they are not universally offered to patients despite improvements in quality of life without detriment to overall survival (OS). FOCUS4-N was set up to explore the impact of oral maintenance therapy in patients who are responding to first-line therapy. METHODS: FOCUS4 was a molecularly stratified trial program that registered patients with newly diagnosed mCRC. The FOCUS4-N trial was offered to patients in whom a targeted subtrial was unavailable or biomarker tests failed. Patients were randomly assigned using a 1:1 ratio between maintenance capecitabine and active monitoring (AM). The primary outcome was progression-free survival (PFS) with secondary outcomes including OS toxicity and tolerability. RESULTS: Between March 2014 and March 2020, 254 patients were randomly assigned (127 to capecitabine and 127 to AM) across 88 UK sites. Baseline characteristics were balanced. There was strong evidence of efficacy for PFS (hazard ratio = 0.40; 95% CI, 0.21 to 0.75; P < .0001), but no significant improvement in OS (hazard ratio, 0.93; 95% CI, 0.69 to 1.27; P = .66) was observed. Compliance with treatment was good, and toxicity from capecitabine versus AM was as expected with grade ≥ 2 fatigue (25% v 12%), diarrhea (23% v 13%), and hand-foot syndrome (26% v 3%). Quality of life showed little difference between the groups. CONCLUSION: Despite strong evidence of disease control with maintenance therapy, OS remains unaffected and FOCUS4-N provides additional evidence to support the use of treatment breaks as safe management alternatives for patients who are stable or responding to first-line treatment for mCRC. Capecitabine without bevacizumab may be used to extend PFS in the interval after 16 weeks of first-line therapy.

Type: Article
Title: Capecitabine Versus Active Monitoring in Stable or Responding Metastatic Colorectal Cancer After 16 Weeks of First-Line Therapy: Results of the Randomized FOCUS4-N Trial
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1200/JCO.21.01436
Publisher version: https://dx.doi.org/10.1200/JCO.21.01436
Language: English
Additional information: Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences > Cancer Institute
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences > Cancer Institute > Research Department of Oncology
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > Inst of Clinical Trials and Methodology
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > Inst of Clinical Trials and Methodology > MRC Clinical Trials Unit at UCL
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10134621
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