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Retrospective analysis of treatment-naive Slovenian patients with metastatic melanoma treated with pembrolizumab : real-world experience
Nežka Hribernik, Marko Boc, Janja Ocvirk, Jasna Knez Arbeiter, Tanja Mesti, Marija Ignjatović, Martina Reberšek, 2020, original scientific article

Abstract: Based on recent data from clinical trials, the immune checkpoint inhibitor pembrolizumab prolongs survival and has a good toxicity profile in patients with advanced or metastatic melanoma. However, the question remains whether these results are transmitted into daily clinical practice. The aim of this study was to assess the efficacy and toxicity of pembrolizumab in treatment-naive patients with metastatic melanoma in everyday clinical practice in Slovenia and compare it to the results from clinical trials. Patients and methods. This observational retrospective cohort study included 138 consecutive metastatic treatment-naive melanoma patients treated with pembrolizumab at the Institute of Oncology Ljubljana in Slovenia, from January 2016 to December 2018. Patient and treatment characteristics were retrospectively collected from hospital data base. Statistical data was obtained using the SPSS software version 22. Survival rate was calculated with the Kaplan-Meier method. Observation period took place between January 2016 and the end of June 2019. Results. The estimated median overall survival (OS) was 25.1 months (95% CI, 14.6%35.6) and the median progressionfree survival (PFS) was 10.7 months (95% CI, 5.9%15.4). Among all patients, 29 (21.0%) achieved complete response, 31 (22.5%) partial response and 23 (16.7%) reached stable disease. The number of organs with metastatic involvement and the level of baseline lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) concentration had significant influence on survival rates. Immune-related adverse events (irAE) were reported in 88 (63%) patients, while grade 3%4 irAE occurred in 12 (8.7%). Due to toxicity, 16 (11.6%) patients discontinued the treatment. Conclusions. Our real-world data from single centre retrospective analysis of treatment-naive metastatic melanoma patients treated with pembrolizumab showed inferior median OS and similar median PFS, compared to the results from clinical trials. However, patients with normal serum levels of LDH and a small number of organs with metastatic involvement had comparable survival outcomes. Toxicity rates of pembrolizumab were quite similar. These results further support the use of pembrolizumab for metastatic treatment-naive melanoma patients.
Keywords: immunotherapy, pembrolizumab, metastatic melanoma, treatment-naive
Published in DiRROS: 11.07.2024; Views: 67; Downloads: 29
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Prevalence of BRAF, NRAS and c-KIT mutations in Slovenian patients with advanced melanoma
Maja Ebert Moltara, Srdjan Novaković, Marko Boc, Marina Bučić, Martina Reberšek, Vesna Zadnik, Janja Ocvirk, 2018, original scientific article

Abstract: BRAF, NRAS and c-KIT mutations are characteristics of tumour tissues that influence on treatment decisions in metastatic melanoma patients. Mutation frequency and their correlation with histological characteristics in Slovenian population have not been investigated yet. Patients and methods. In our retrospective analysis we analysed mutational status of BRAF, NRAS and c-KIT in 230 pathological samples of patients who were intended to be treated with systemic therapy due to metastatic disease at the Institute of Oncology Ljubljana between 2013 and 2016. We collected also histological characteristics of primary tumours and clinical data of patients and correlated them with mutational status of tumour samples. Results. The study population consisted of 230 patients with a mean age 59 years (range 25%85). 141 (61.3%) were males and 89 (38.7%) females. BRAF mutations were identified in 129 (56.1%), NRAS in 31 (13.5%) and c-KIT in 3 (1.3%) tissue samples. Among the 129 patients with BRAF mutations, 114 (88.4%) patients had V600E mutation and 15 (11.6%) had V600K mutation. Patients with BRAF mutations tended to be younger at diagnosis (52 vs. 59 years, p < 0.05), patients with NRAS mutations older (61 vs. 55 years, p < 0.05). Number of c-KIT mutations were too low for any statistical correlation, but there was one out of 3 melanoma located in mucus membranes. Conclusions. The analysis detected high rate of BRAF mutations, low NRAS mutations and low c-KIT mutations compared to previously published studies in Europe and North America. One of the main reasons for this observation is specific characteristics of study population.
Keywords: BRAF, NRAS, c-KIT, melanoma
Published in DiRROS: 10.06.2024; Views: 115; Downloads: 57
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Bevacizumab plus chemotherapy in elderly patients with previously untreated metastatic colorectal cancer : single center experience
Janja Ocvirk, Maja Ebert Moltara, Tanja Mesti, Marko Boc, Martina Reberšek, Neva Volk, Jernej Benedik, Zvezdana Hlebanja, 2016, original scientific article

Abstract: Metastatic colorectal cancer (mCRC) is mainly a disease of elderly, however, geriatric population is underrepresented in clinical trials. Patient registries represent a tool to assess and follow treatment outcomes in this patient population. The aim of the study was with the help of the patients% register to determine the safety and efficacy of bevacizumab plus chemotherapy in elderly patients who had previously untreated metastatic colorectal cancer. Patients and methods. The registry of patients with mCRC was designed to prospectively evaluate the safety and efficacy of bevacizumab-containing chemotherapy as well as selection of patients in routine clinical practice. Patient baseline clinical characteristics, pre-specified bevacizumab-related adverse events, and efficacy data were collected, evaluated and compared according to the age categories. Results. Between January 2008 and December 2010, 210 patients with mCRC (median age 63, male 61.4%) started bevacizumab-containing therapy in the 1st line setting. Majority of the 210 patients received irinotecan-based chemotherapy (68%) as 1st line treatment and 105 patients (50%) received bevacizumab maintenance therapy. Elderly (% 70 years) patients presented 22.9% of all patients and they had worse performance status (PS 1/2, 62.4%) than patients in < 70 years group (PS 1/2, 35.8%). Difference in disease control rate was mainly due to inability to assess response in elderly group (64.6% in elderly and 77.8% in < 70 years group, p = 0.066). The median progression free survival was 10.2 (95% CI, 6.7%16.2) and 11.3 (95% CI, 10.2%12.6) months in elderly and < 70 years group, respectively (p = 0.58). The median overall survival was 18.5 (95% CI, 12.4%28.9) and 27.4 (95% CI, 22.7%31.9) months for elderly and < 70 years group, respectively (p = 0.03). Three-year survival rate was 26% and 37.6% in elderly vs. < 70 years group (p = 0.03). Overall rates of bevacizumab-related adverse events were similar in both groups: proteinuria 21/22 %, hypertension 25/19 %, haemorrhage 2/4 % and thromboembolic events 10/6 %, for elderly and < 70 years group, respectively. Conclusions. In routine clinical practice, the combination of bevacizumab and chemotherapy is effective and welltolerated regimen in elderly patients with metastatic colorectal cancer.
Keywords: metastatic colorectal cancer, bevacizumab, chemotherapy, elderly
Published in DiRROS: 30.04.2024; Views: 285; Downloads: 83
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Bevacizumab and irinotecan in recurrent malignant glioma, a single institution experience
Tanja Mesti, Maja Ebert Moltara, Marko Boc, Martina Reberšek, Janja Ocvirk, 2015, original scientific article

Abstract: Treatment options of recurrent malignant gliomas are very limited and with a poor survival benefit. The results from phase II trials suggest that the combination of bevacizumab and irinotecan is beneficial. Patients and methods. The medical documentation of 19 adult patients with recurrent malignant gliomas was retrospectively reviewed. All patients received bevacizumab (10 mg/kg) and irinotecan (340 mg/m2 or 125 mg/m2) every two weeks. Patient clinical characteristics, drug toxicities, response rate, progression free survival (PFS) and overall survival (OS) were evaluated. Results. Between August 2008 and November 2011, 19 patients with recurrent malignant gliomas (median age 44.7, male 73.7%, WHO performance status 0%2) were treated with bevacizumab/irinotecan regimen. Thirteen patients had glioblastoma, 5 anaplastic astrocytoma and 1 anaplastic oligoastrocytoma. With exception of one patient, all patients had initially a standard therapy with primary resection followed by postoperative chemoradiotherapy. Radiological response was confirmed after 3 months in 9 patients (1 complete response, 8 partial responses), seven patients had stable disease and three patients have progressed. The median PFS was 6.8 months (95% confidence interval [CI]: 5.3-8.3) with six-month PFS rate 52.6%. The median OS was 7.7 months (95% CI: 6.6-8.7), while six-month and twelve-month survival rates were 68.4% and 31.6%, respectively. There were 16 cases of hematopoietic toxicity grade (G) 1-2. Non-hematopoietic toxicity was present in 14 cases, all G1-2, except for one patient with proteinuria G3. No grade 4 toxicities, no thromboembolic event and no intracranial hemorrhage were observed. Conclusions. In recurrent malignant gliomas combination of bevacizumab and irinotecan might be an active regimen with acceptable toxicity.
Keywords: recurrent malignant glioma, systemic therapy, bevacizumab
Published in DiRROS: 17.04.2024; Views: 231; Downloads: 70
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Dnevi internistične onkologije 2024 : inovativna zdravila v onkologiji
2024, proceedings of professional or unreviewed scientific conference contributions

Published in DiRROS: 04.04.2024; Views: 344; Downloads: 132
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Cisplatin-induced non-convulsive posterior reversible encephalopathy syndrome in a 41-year-old woman with metastatic malignant melanoma
Janja Ocvirk, Marko Boc, Martina Reberšek, Tanja Roš-Opaškar, 2009, original scientific article

Abstract: Background. Cisplatin, a widely used antineoplastic agent usually induces peripheral neuropathy, but can rarely also complicate with encephalopathy, with or without seizures. Case report. We report a case of a young patient with metastatic malignant melanoma with signs and symptoms of cisplatin-induced non-convulsive posterior reversible encephalopaty syndrome. Within the days shortly after the first cycle of cisplatin based chemotherapy the patient suffered from nausea, vomitus, headache, severe pain at the site of sub-cutaneous metastases and confusion. She later experienced somnolence, cortical blindness and aphasia, but without epileptic seizures. Conclusions. Cisplatin is an effective chemotherapeutic drug but also very toxic one and physicians using it must also be aware of possible encephalopathy.
Published in DiRROS: 08.03.2024; Views: 287; Downloads: 78
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3. limfomska šola, Ljubljana, oktober 2023
Marko Boc, 2023, other monographs and other completed works

Published in DiRROS: 04.01.2024; Views: 344; Downloads: 168
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