78IN - Treatment landscape and ongoing clinical trials in neuroendocrine tumors

Date 28 September 2014
Event ESMO 2014
Session Neuroendocrine tumours: The cutting edge and a glimpse into the future
Topics Anticancer Agents
Neuroendocrine Tumours
Translational Research
Basic Principles in the Management and Treatment (of cancer)
Biological Therapy
Presenter Kjell Oeberg
Citation Annals of Oncology (2014) 25 (suppl_4): iv27-iv28. 10.1093/annonc/mdu307
Authors M. Pavel
  • Dept Of Gastroenterology & Hepatology, Charité Universitätsmedizin Berlin, 13353 - Berlin/DE




Therapy in neuroendocrine tumors (NET) is guided by the presence of hormone-related syndromes, somatostatin receptor status, histology (ki67), aggressiveness and extrahepatic spread. Therapy aims at syndrome and tumor control. Surgery is the only option toward a cure. Loco-regional therapies (e.g. embolisation, radiofrequency ablation) may reduce tumor load and improve clinical syndromes. Somatostatin analogs (SSA) and interferon-alpha are established therapies for carcinoid syndrome (CS). An oral serotonin synthesis inhibitor is evaluated in refractory CS (TELESTAR). Other medical therapies (PPI; diazoxide) are used for syndrome control depending on the tumor type. Antiproliferative therapy options include SSA, novel targeted drugs and systemic chemotherapy. Large placebo-controlled trials provide evidence of the antiproliferative efficacy of SSA (octreotide and lanreotide) in midgut NET and enteropancreatic NET, respectively. Similarly, the novel molecular-targeted therapies, the multiple tyrosine kinase inhibitor (TKI) sunitinib and the mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) inhibitor everolimus have been evaluated in placebo-controlled trials, and approved in progressive pancreatic NET. Novel TKIs and combinations of everolimus with SSA or bevacizumab are currently explored in clinical trials to improve response rates or overcome drug resistance. Everolimus and sunitinib (RADIANT-4; Sunland study) are under evaluation in non-pancreatic NET, as well as high dose octreotide vs. Lu-DOTATATE in midgut NET (NETTER-1). Systemic chemotherapy has very limited if any value in slowly growing advanced NET (“carcinoids of different sites”), but is established therapy (streptozotocin/ 5-FU) in pancreatic NET. Future studies will have to establish in which line targeted drugs will be used, especially in pancreatic NET (SEQTOR trial). Molecular markers to preselect patients for specific therapies still need to be identified. Systemic chemotherapy is standard therapy in neuroendocrine carcinoma (NEC G3; first line cisplatin or carboplatin/ etoposide; second-line options include FOLFOX, FOLFIRI or temozolomide +/− capecitabine), however response rates are overall short-lasting (median 4-6 months).


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Honoraria for presentations and advisory board meetings from Novartis, Pfizer, IPSEN, Lexicon.