|The following article features coverage from the NCCN 2022 Annual Conference. Click here to read more of Cancer Therapy Advisor’s conference coverage.|
Higher environmental temperatures are associated with better outcomes among patients with stage I-III breast cancer, according to research presented in a poster at the NCCN 2022 Annual Conference.
Living in a region with an annual average temperature (AAT) greater than 60.9° F was associated with 12% greater odds of achieving a pathologic complete response (pCR).
Researchers also observed a 2% improvement in overall survival (OS) for every 5-degree increase in AAT.
To test the hypothesis that environmental temperatures affect breast cancer outcomes, the researchers conducted a retrospective analysis of 1,209,332 patients with stage I-III breast cancer who were enrolled in the National Cancer Database between 2004 and 2018.
Most patients were older than 55 years of age (69.2%), White (83.9%), and lived in urban areas (98.6%). They had hormone receptor (HR)-positive/HER2-negative disease (52.1%), triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC; 8.6%), HR+/HER2+ disease (7.2%), and HR-/HER2+ disease (3.1%). They were treated with chemotherapy (38.3%), hormone therapy (68.5%), radiation (62.7%), and surgery (94.3%).
Compared with an AAT of 60.9° F or below at the time of surgery, an AAT greater than 60.9°F was associated with an increased likelihood of achieving pCR (odds ratio [OR], 1.12; 95% CI, 1.07-1.18; P <.001).
When patients were stratified by breast cancer subtype, a greater likelihood of achieving pCR was observed for patients living in warmer areas who had HR+/HER2- disease (OR, 1.15; 95% CI, 1.04-1.27; P =.008) or TNBC (OR, 1.14; 95% CI, 1.07-1.23; P <.001).
Compared with patients who lived in an area with an AAT of 53.7° F or below at the time of diagnosis, patients living in areas with a higher AAT had a lower risk of death (hazard ratio [HR], 0.98; 95% CI, 0.96-0.99; P =.002).
In fact, the mortality risk was reduced with every 5-degree increase in AAT (HR, 0.98; 95% CI, 0.97-0.99; P <.001). When patients were stratified by breast cancer subtype, higher temperatures had a protective effect for those with HR+/HER2- disease (HR, 0.97; 95% CI, 0.95-0.99; P =.003).
“After controlling for potential confounders, higher environmental temperatures are associated with significant improvements in pCR as well as OS in stage I-III [breast cancer patients],” the researchers wrote. “Further research focusing on underlying mechanisms and therapeutic strategies to abrogate this outcome disparity is warranted.”
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Gupta A, Attwood K, Gupta K, et al. Influence of environmental temperature on pathological complete response and overall survival in breast cancer: A national cancer database population-based study. Presented at NCCN 2022 Annual Conference; March 31 – April 2, 2022. Abstract CLO22-051.