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Emilio Francesco Giunta, Alessio Signori, Howard Jack West, Giulio Metro, Alex Friedlaender, Kaushal Parikh, Giuseppe Luigi Banna, Alfredo Addeo

Jun 14, 2022
Frontiers in Oncology

Background Second and third generation ALK inhibitors (ALKIs) have been recently approved for ALK translocated lung cancer treatment, improving and expanding the first line scenario.
Method In this systematic review and metanalysis, we investigated the efficacy and safety of next generation ALKIs in untreated advanced ALK translocated lung cancer patients, searching for randomized phase III controlled trials through databases (PubMed, EMBASE, and the Cochrane Library). Inclusion and exclusion of studies, quality assessment, data extraction, and synthesis were independently accomplished by two reviewers, with discrepancies adjudicated by a third reviewer. Stata (StataCorp., v.16) software was used for the metanalysis.
Result In total, seven randomized controlled trials met our inclusion criteria. Comparing the results of next generation ALKIs and control therapy (crizotinib or chemotherapy), next generation ALKIs significantly improved progression free survival (PFS), overall survival (OS), objective response rate (ORR), disease control rate (DCR), any lesion (aCNSRR) and measurable lesions of central nervous system response rate (mCNSRR). Safety results were similar between the experimental and control groups.
Conclusion Our analysis confirmed that next generation ALKIs are the preferred first line treatment option for ALK translocated lung cancer. They are superior to crizotinib or chemotherapy in several clinical endpoints, including OS, PFS, ORR and CNS disease control, without increased toxicity. In the absence of head to head data, the choice between these molecules should be guided by physician experience and preference, drug specific safety profile and schedule.

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