Twenty-One-Gene Recurrence Score (RS) in Germline (g)CHEK2 Mutation-Associated Versus Sporadic Breast Cancer (BC): A Multi-Site Case-Control Study
Journal of Clinical Oncology
Background: Genomic assays, such as RS, are used to determine chemotherapy benefit in early-stage, estrogen receptor (ER)- and/or progesterone receptor (PR)-positive, HER2 negative BC patients (pts). Currently, guidelines to use pts’ germline genetic testing results to guide adjuvant therapy are lacking. Several reports have indicated worse outcomes for BC pts with gCHEK2 pathogenic variants (PV). We investigated whether PV in CHEK2 were associated with increased RS. Methods: Patient-level clinical data and RS were derived from electronic medical records of seven medical centers between years 2013-17. Confirmation of RS using the Genomic Health provider portal was performed. 38 pts with germline PV in CHEK2 (15 pts/39.5% with c.1100delC mutation) and RS score (cases) were matched with BC pts whose genetic testing did not identify PV (controls) using a 1:2 matching schema. Pts were matched based on age at diagnosis and lymph node (LN) status. LN negative pts were further matched based on T-stage. A multivariate random intercept linear mixed model of CHEK2 mutation status on RS was performed, adjusting for PR. A secondary ordinal univariate analysis was conducted that categorized RS into low, intermediate and high risk ( < 18, 18-30, and > 30, respectively). P-values were reported based on a null hypothesis of no effect against a two-sided alternative. Results: The median RS for cases was 19.5 (interquartile range [IQR]: 15 to 25) and the median RS for controls was 18 (IQR: 12 to 22). A greater proportion of cases were categorized as high risk (10.5%) compared to controls (5.6%), and a smaller proportion of cases were categorized as low risk (36.8%) compared to controls (49.3%). Cases had higher grade and increased proportion of PR-negative BC as compared with controls (grade 1: 12.1% of cases versus 32.4% of controls; PR-negative: 7.9% of cases versus 5.6% of controls). The variables used to match cases and controls (age, lymph node status, and T-stage) had similar summary statistics. The RS was 1.97-point higher in pts with gCHEK2 PV compared to controls, after adjusting for PR (95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.02-point lower to 4.96-point higher; p = 0.194). The secondary analysis of CHEK2 mutation status on an ordinal RS risk group yielded comparable results; on average, the odds of being high risk compared to the combined intermediate/low risk groups was 1.72 times higher in cases compared to controls (95% CI: 0.77 to 3.80; p = 0.181), but these differences were not significant. Conclusions: Our case-control study did not show a statistically higher RS for BC that develops in pts with gCHEK2 PV. Further studies are warranted to evaluate the association between type of CHEK2 PV (frameshift versus missense) and other modifying genetic variables and RS.
Afghani A, Marsh S, Winchester A, Gao D, Parris H, Axell L, et al. Twenty-one-gene recurrence score (RS) in germline (g)CHEK2 mutation-associated versus sporadic breast cancers (BC): a multi-site case-control study. J Clin Oncol. 2021 May 20;39 (15 suppl):10531. DOI: 10.1200/JCO.2021.39.15_suppl.10531