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Koehler, Viktoria Florentine; Berg, Elke; Adam, Pia; Weber, Gian-Luca; Pfestroff, Andreas; Luster, Markus; Kutsch, Jana Maria; Lapa, Constantin; Sandner, Benjamin; Rayes, Nada; Fuss, Carmina Teresa; Kreissl, Michael C.; Hoster, Eva; Allelein, Stephanie; Schott, Matthias; Todica, Andrei; Fassnacht, Martin; Kroiss, Matthias and Spitzweg, Christine (2021): Real-World Efficacy and Safety of Multi-Tyrosine Kinase Inhibitors in Radioiodine Refractory Thyroid Cancer. In: Thyroid, Vol. 31, No. 10: pp. 1531-1541

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Background: The management of patients with locally advanced or metastatic differentiated thyroid cancer (DTC) that is refractory to radioiodine (RAI) remains a therapeutic challenge. The multi-tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs) sorafenib and lenvatinib have been approved based on phase 3 clinical trials. Patients and Methods: We aimed at describing the efficacy and safety of TKI treatment of RAI-refractory DTC in a real-world setting at six German referral centers. One hundred and one patients with locally advanced or metastatic RAI-refractory DTC treated with sorafenib, lenvatinib, and/or pazopanib were included. Progression-free survival (PFS) and overall survival (OS) probabilities were estimated by using the Kaplan-Meier method. Results: Ninety-seven of 101 patients had progressive disease before TKI initiation. The median PFS for first-line treatment with sorafenib (n=33), lenvatinib (n=53), and pazopanib (n=15) was 9 (95% confidence interval 5.2-12.8), 12 (4.4-19.6), and 12 months (4.4-19.6), respectively. The median OS for first-line treatment was 37 (10-64) for sorafenib, 47 (15.5-78.5) for lenvatinib, and 34 months (20.2-47.8) for pazopanib. Serious complications (e.g., hemorrhage, acute coronary syndrome, and thrombosis/venous thromboembolism) occurred in 16 out of 75 (21%) patients taking lenvatinib, in 3 out of 42 (7%) patients taking sorafenib, and in 3 out of 24 (13%) patients taking pazopanib. Conclusions: Sorafenib, lenvatinib, and pazopanib are effective treatment options in the majority of patients with RAI-refractory DTC. The PFS and six-month survival rate in patients treated with lenvatinib und pazopanib appear to compare favorably with sorafenib in the first-line treatment setting. However, a more advanced disease stage at treatment initiation in sorafenib- and pazopanib-treated patients in the era before TKI-approval and the retrospective nature of this study precludes a direct comparison of TKIs.

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