Home Current Issue Previous Issues Published Ahead-of-Print For Authors Journal Info
Skip Navigation LinksHome > January 2007 - Volume 18 - Issue 1 > Ratio of trastuzumab levels in serum and cerebrospinal fluid...
Anti-Cancer Drugs:
doi: 10.1097/01.cad.0000236313.50833.ee
Clinical Reports

Ratio of trastuzumab levels in serum and cerebrospinal fluid is altered in HER2-positive breast cancer patients with brain metastases and impairment of blood–brain barrier

Stemmler, Hans-Joachima; Schmitt, Manfredb; Willems, Aminab; Bernhard, Helgac; Harbeck, Nadiab; Heinemann, Volkera

Collapse Box

Abstract

Patients receiving trastuzumab for HER2-overexpressing metastatic breast cancer seem to suffer from an increased risk of brain metastases, even in cases with responsive disease. To evaluate whether trastuzumab is able to penetrate the blood–brain barrier, we measured trastuzumab levels in the serum and in cerebrospinal fluid of metastatic breast cancer patients with brain metastases receiving trastuzumab for HER2-overexpressing metastatic breast cancer. In a pilot study, metastatic breast cancer patients with brain metastases and HER2-overexpressing tumors (HercepTest; Dako, Copenhagen, Denmark) were included. At different time points, trastuzumab levels in the serum and cerebrospinal fluid were measured using a newly developed immunoenzymatic test for trastuzumab. Six out of eight patients were evaluable for determination of trastuzumab level in the serum and cerebrospinal fluid. Before radiotherapy, median trastuzumab level in the serum was 52 054 ng/ml compared with 124 ng/ml in cerebrospinal fluid (ratio 420 : 1). After completion of radiotherapy, median trastuzumab level was 20 185 ng/ml in the serum and 226 ng/ml in cerebrospinal fluid, respectively (ratio 76 : 1). With concomitant meningeal carcinomatosis, trastuzumab level in the serum after radiotherapy was 17 431 and 356 ng/ml in cerebrospinal fluid (ratio 49 : 1). For the first time, we present clinical evidence that trastuzumab levels in cerebrospinal fluid are increased under conditions of an impaired blood–brain barrier such as meningeal carcinomatosis or radiotherapy. This evidence supports the concept of continuing trastuzumab therapy in patients with brain metastases treated by radiotherapy. Monitoring of trastuzumab levels in the serum and cerebrospinal fluid may enable individualized therapy strategies in metastatic breast cancer patients with brain metastases, and lead to a better understanding of trastuzumab pharmacokinetics in the cerebrospinal fluid and serum.

© 2007 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.

Login

Search for Similar Articles
You may search for similar articles that contain these same keywords or you may modify the keyword list to augment your search.