Background and Aim:
Despite a rapid uptake in biologics across numerous cancer types, targeted therapy use in colon cancer has been relatively steady over the last year. However, not all colon cancer patients are treated in the same way.
This study aims to understand what is driving a higher use of biologic-containing therapies in colon cancer patients with left-side (LHS) tumours of the colon versus those with right-side (RHS) tumours.
Between April 2017 and March 2018, n=21 oncologists in Australia provided data, online, on n=354 anonymised colon cancer patients treated with anti-cancer drug therapy. The sample included: n=172 patients with LHS tumours of the colon and n=140 patients with RHS tumours.
Among other metrics, physicians were asked to provide information on patient demographics, biomarker testing and results, and reasons for treatment selection.
The data suggest that although the gap between patients on biologic therapy with LHS versus RHS tumours is less distinct than it was a year ago, patients with RHS tumours are less likely to be treated with biologics. These patients are more likely to harbour various mutations, such as KRAS, NRAS or BRAF. Conversely, patients with LHS tumours are more likely to be diagnosed as wild type for these biomarkers.
Out of all the reasons for selecting current treatment, physicians were more likely to choose New Clinical Data and Biomarker results when submitting information for their patients with LHS tumours versus those with RHS tumours.
Both tumour location and genetic mutations seem to be a factor when selecting treatments for colon cancer patients in Australia.