It has been difficult to prove a survival advantage for epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) inhibitors in lung cancer patients with EGFR mutations. Among 38,381 patients, we found that the introduction of EGFR inhibitors was associated with a survival increase among Asian female patients that was not matched by non-Asian male patients. Our study adds population-based data to support that the use of EGFR inhibitors extends lives. Introduction We examined the effect of access to epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) tyrosine kinase inhibitor (TKI) therapy on survival for Asian female (AF) EGFR mutation-enriched patients with advanced lung adenocarcinoma. Materials and Methods We used the Surveillance Epidemiology and End Results database to study patients with stage IV lung adenocarcinoma diagnosed from 1998 to 2012. We compared survival (lung cancer-specific survival [LCSS] and overall survival) between AFs and non-Asian males (NAMs), an EGFR mutation-enriched and EGFR mutation-unenriched population, respectively, with a diagnosis in the pre-EGFR TKI (1998-2004) and EGFR TKI (2005-2012) eras. We used Cox proportional hazards models to examine the interaction of access to TKI treatment and EGFR enrichment status. Results Among 3029 AF and 35,352 NAM patients, we found that LCSS was best for AFs with a diagnosis in the TKI era (median, 14 months), followed by AFs with a diagnosis in the pre-TKI era (median, 8 months), NAMs with a diagnosis in the TKI era (median, 5 months), and NAMs with a diagnosis in the pre-TKI era (median, 4 months; log-rank P < .0001). In a multivariable model, the effect of a diagnosis in the TKI era on survival was greater for AFs than for NAMs (LCSS, P = .0020; overall survival, P = .0007). A lung cancer diagnosis in the TKI era was associated with an overall mortality decrease of 26% for AFs (hazard ratio, 0.740; 95% confidence interval, 0.682-0.80) and 15.9% for NAMs (hazard ratio, 0.841; 95% confidence interval, 0.822-0.860). Conclusions We found increased survival for lung adenocarcinoma diagnoses made after widespread access to EGFR TKIs, with the greatest increase among AF patients enriched for EGFR mutations. The present analysis eliminated the effect of crossover, which has complicated assessments of the survival advantage in EGFR TKI randomized trials.
- Epidermal growth factor receptor
- Ethnic disparities
- Outcome research
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
- Cancer Research