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VEGF Expression is Related to Good Response and Long Progression-free Survival in Gastrointestinal Stromal Tumor Patients Treated With Sunitinib

Koh, Youngil MD*; Lee, Hee Eun MD, PhD; Im, Seock-Ah MD, PhD*,‡; Kim, Se-Hyung MD, PhD§; Kim, Tae Min MD*,‡; Han, Sae-Won MD*,‡; Oh, Do-Youn MD, PhD*,‡; Kim, Jee Hyun MD, PhD; Lee, Se-Hoon MD, PhD*,‡; Kim, Dong-Wan MD, PhD*,‡; Kim, Tae-You MD, PhD*,‡; Kim, Woo-Ho MD, PhD†,‡; Heo, Dae Seog MD, PhD*,‡; Bang, Yung-Jue MD, PhD*,‡

doi: 10.1097/PDM.0b013e3182107ea0
Original Articles

Abstract: We intended to find predictive markers in advanced gastrointestinal stromal tumor patients treated with sunitinib. Korean patients who received sunitinib after imatinib failure for advanced gastrointestinal stromal tumor were studied. Genotyping for KIT and PDGFRA were performed. An immunohistochemical stain for PDGFR-α, PDGFR-β, and vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) was performed. A total of 22 patients were analyzed. Their median age was 55.1 years, and the male to female ratio was 12:10. The response rate of sunitinib was 30.4% and the median progression-free survival (PFS) was 10.1 months. In the sunitinib treatment, VEGF expression was related to a favorable response (P=0.002) and long PFS (P=0.020) in univariate analysis. CD34 (P=0.023) and PDGFR (P=0.022) expressions were also related to long sunitinib PFS in univariate analysis. However, the genotype did not affect either response rate or the PFS of sunitinib. In conclusion, expressions of VEGF, PDGFR, and CD34 may have predictive value in sunitinib treatments.

*Department of Internal Medicine, Seoul National University Hospital

Department of Pathology, Seoul National University Hospital

Cancer Research Institute, Seoul National University College of Medicine

§Department of Radiology, Seoul National University Hospital, Seoul

Department of Internal Medicine, Seoul National University Bundang Hospital, Seongnam, Korea

Supported in part by research grant from Cancer Research Institute, Seoul National University (2009) to Seock-Ah Im (CRI-09-6).

The authors declare no conflict of interest.

Reprints: Seock-Ah Im, MD, PhD, Department of Internal Medicine, Seoul National University Hospital, 101 Daehangro, Chongno-gu, Seoul 110-744, Korea (e-mail:

© 2011 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.