Journal of the Endocrine Society Journal Article

Response to Immunotherapy in Combination With Mitotane in Patients With Metastatic Adrenocortical Cancer

October 11, 2019

Lia Head, Katja Kiseljak-Vassiliades, Toshimasa J Clark, Hilary Somerset, Jonathan King, Christopher Raeburn, Maria Albuja-Cruz, Michael Weyant, Joseph Cleveland, Margaret E Wierman, Stephen Leong
Journal of the Endocrine Society, Volume 3, Issue 12, December 2019, Pages 2295–2304
https://doi.org/10.1210/js.2019-00305

Abstract

Adrenocortical carcinoma (ACC) is a rare orphan disease with a dismal prognosis. Surgery remains the first-line treatment, but most patients eventually develop metastatic disease. Mitotane is often used with chemotherapy with modest success. Little information is available concerning the efficacy of immunotherapy in combination with mitotane. We conducted a retrospective review of our initial six patients with metastatic ACC, for whom mitotane alone or with chemotherapy failed, and who were subsequently treated with a combination of pembrolizumab and mitotane, between July 2016 and March 2019. Imaging was analyzed per Response Evaluation Criteria in Solid Tumours 1.1 criteria. Two patients had a partial response and four patients had stable disease (8 to 19 months). One patient had grade 3 hepatitis and pembrolizumab was discontinued after 8 months. She died with disease progression 16 months after initiating pembrolizumab. One patient developed brain metastasis after 19 months of treatment and was transitioned to hospice. One patient had focal pneumonitis after 18 months of treatment, and pembrolizumab was discontinued. Three remaining patients continue pembrolizumab plus mitotane at the time of this writing. The current standard of care for ACC is a combination of etoposide, doxorubicin, cisplatin, and mitotane with an overall survival of 14.8 months. All six patients lived for at least 16 months after starting pembrolizumab added to mitotane therapy. The therapy appeared to be effective in both microsatellite instability-high and microsatellite stable tumors, suggesting some synergistic effect with mitotane. Combined immunotherapy and mitotane should be considered in future clinical trials in patients with ACC.

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