The following article features coverage from the 2017 American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Annual Meeting in Chicago, Illinois. Click here to read more of Cancer Therapy Advisor‘s conference coverage.

A study presented at the 2017 American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Annual Meeting in Chicago reported that patients with early stage, HER2-negative breast cancer may be sufficiently well-treated with docetaxel and cyclophosphamide instead of anthracycline-based chemotherapy.1

The West German Study Group (WSG) phase 3 PlanB trial ( Identifier: NCT01049425) was designed to test whether 6 cycles of anthracycline-free docetaxel plus cyclophosphamide (arm A) was non-inferior to standard anthracycline-taxane chemotherapy (arm B).

Continue Reading

The study was amended to include Oncotype DX for all HR-positive tumors.

Of 3198 enrolled women, 2449 women were randomly assigned — 1222 to arm A and 1227 to arm B. Eighteen percent of these participants had HER2-negative tumors according to central review.

After a median follow up of 61 months, 5-year disease-free survival (DFS) was similar across both groups (89.9% for arm A vs 90.2% for arm B) as was 5-year overall survival (OS; 94.7% for arm A vs 94.6% for arm B).

Recurrence score did not emerge as a predictive factor for anthracycline efficacy. Efficacy differences were not observed in subgroup analyses, which included triple-negative breast cancer and patients with more than 4 lymph nodes’ involvement.

The authors concluded that “patients with early HER2-negative [breast cancer] seem to be sufficiently treated by 6 cycles of docetaxel/cyclophosphamide compared to 4 cycles of [anthracycline-based chemotherapy] followed by 4 cycles of docetaxel — no efficacy differences are evident in high-risk subgroups defined by triple-negative status, nodal status, or high Recurrence Score.”

RELATED: Q&A With Narjust Duma, MD: Minority Patient Participation in Breast Cancer Clinical Trials

Read more of Cancer Therapy Advisor‘s coverage of the 2017 American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Annual Meeting by visiting the conference page.


  1. Harbeck N, Gluz O, Clemens MR, et al. Prospective WSG phase III PlanB trial: final analysis of adjuvant 4xEC→4x doc vs. 6x docetaxel/cyclophosphamide in patients with high clinical risk and intermediate-to-high genomic risk HER2-negative, early breast cancer. J Clin Oncol. 2017;35(suppl; abstr 504).