The analysis of 3-year adjuvant therapy with imatinib in patients with high-risk molecular profiled gastrointestinal stromal tumors (GIST) treated in routine practice

Published:August 16, 2020DOI:


      • The first real world data confirming efficacy of 3-year adjuvant therapy with imatinib in patients with high-risk molecular profiled gastrointestinal stromal tumors, especially harboring KIT exon 11 mutations.



      The real-world data on adjuvant imatinib therapy in high-risk primary GIST are scarce.


      We have analysed the data of 107 consecutive patients with gastrointestinal stromal tumour (GIST) after resection treated with adjuvant imatinib (for planned 3 years with initial dose 400 mg daily, started not later than 4 months after operation) in 6 oncological centres in 2013–2018. All patients were required to have high risk of recurrence (at least 50% according to NCCN/AFIP criteria), known mutational status to exclude PDGFRA D842V mutants and KIT/PDGFRA-wild type cases from therapy without any further selection. Median follow-up time was 27 months.


      The most common primary localization of GIST was small bowel (63 patients; 59%), followed by the stomach (40 patients; 37%). The majority of GIST cases harboured exon 11 KIT mutations (88 cases, 82%), 11 cases had exon 9 KIT mutations (10%), 8 had other KIT/PDGFRA mutations potentially sensitive to imatinib. Forty patients (37%) finished 3-year adjuvant imatinib therapy as planned, 48 (45%) still continue therapy, 5 (4.5%) patients had finished adjuvant therapy prematurely due to toxicity, 6 (6%) due to disease progression on treatment and 8 (7.5%) due to other reasons. The disease relapse was detected in 19 patients, of them in 5 cases in exon 9 KIT mutants (45%), and 14 cases in patients with exon 11 KIT mutations (11%) [p < 0.01]. Estimated 4-year relapse-free survival (RFS) rate is 78%.


      The early results of adjuvant therapy with imatinib in routine practice outside clinical trials in high-risk mutation-driven GIST patients only confirm high efficacy of this therapy with better tolerability than in clinical trials. We found overrepresentation of exon 9 KIT mutants and ruptured tumors in a group of patients with disease relapse.


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