The prognostic value of the neoadjuvant response index in triple-negative breast cancer: validation and comparison with pathological complete response as outcome measure

M. Jebbink, E. van Werkhoven, I. A. M. Mandjes, J. Wesseling, E. H. Lips, M.-J. T. D. F. Vrancken Peeters, C. E. Loo, G. S. Sonke, S. C. Linn, C. Falo Zamora, S. Rodenhuis

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The Neoadjuvant response index (NRI) has been proposed as a simple measure of downstaging by neoadjuvant treatment in breast cancer. It was previously found to predict recurrence-free survival (RFS) in triple-negative (TN) breast cancer. It was at least as accurate as the standard binary system, the absence or presence of a pathological complete remission (pCR), which is the commonly employed outcome measure. The NRI was evaluated in an independent consecutive series of patients to validate the previous findings. Univariable and multivariable analyses were done to assess the predictive value of clinical parameters and of the NRI for RFS. We combined the original and validation series of patients to build a multivariable predictive model for RFS after neoadjuvant chemotherapy in TN breast cancer. The validation set (N = 108) confirmed that patients with a higher-than-median NRI (> 0.7) had excellent RFS (P = 0.002), similar to that of patients who had achieved a pCR. Multivariable analysis in 191 patients showed that the NRI was a strong independent predictor of RFS (P = 0.0002), with N-stage (P = 0.001) and T-stage (P = 0.014) ranking second and third, respectively. Importantly, among patients who did not achieve a pCR (NRI values below 1), higher NRI values were still associated with better RFS. The NRI is a simple method and a practical tool to predict RFS in TN breast cancer patients treated with neoadjuvant chemotherapy. It adds prognostic information to the presence or absence of pCR and could be useful to compare the efficacies of different chemotherapy regimens
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)145-152
JournalBreast Cancer Research and Treatment
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2015

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