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Abdel-Fatah TMA, Ball GR, Thangavelu PU, et al. Association of Sperm-Associated Antigen 5 and Treatment Response in Patients With Estrogen Receptor–Positive Breast Cancer. JAMA Netw Open. 2020;3(7):e209486. doi:10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2020.9486
Are sperm-associated antigen 5 (SPAG5) transcript or protein expressions associated with treatment response in patients with estrogen receptor–positive breast cancer?
In this cohort study including 12 720 patients with estrogen receptor–positive breast cancer, SPAG5 transcript and SPAG5 protein overexpressions were associated with worse outcomes in patients who received endocrine therapy alone. Overexpressions of SPAG5 transcript or SPAG5 protein were associated with resistance to endocrine therapy but sensitivity to anthracycline-based combination chemotherapy, and downregulation of SPAG5 during the course of preoperative systemic therapies was associated with clinical benefit.
These findings suggest that SPAG5 transcript or SPAG5 protein expression could be used as a clinical tool for selecting and monitoring response to neoadjuvant therapies and guide adjuvant therapy in estrogen receptor–positive breast cancer.
There is no proven test that can guide the optimal treatment, either endocrine therapy or chemotherapy, for estrogen receptor–positive breast cancer.
To investigate the associations of sperm-associated antigen 5 (SPAG5) transcript and SPAG5 protein expressions with treatment response in systemic therapy for estrogen receptor–positive breast cancer.
Design, Settings, and Participants
This retrospective cohort study included patients with estrogen receptor–positive breast cancer who received 5 years of adjuvant endocrine therapy with or without neoadjuvant anthracycline-based combination chemotherapy (NACT) derived from 11 cohorts from December 1, 1986, to November 28, 2019. The associations of SPAG5 transcript and SPAG5 protein expression with pathological complete response to NACT were evaluated, as was the association of SPAG5 mRNA expression with response to neoadjuvant endocrine therapy. The associations of distal relapse–free survival with SPAG5 transcript or SPAG5 protein expressions were analyzed. Data were analyzed from September 9, 2015, to November 28, 2019.
Main Outcomes and Measures
The primary outcomes were breast cancer–specific survival, distal relapse–free survival, pathological complete response, and clinical response. Outcomes were examined using Kaplan-Meier, multivariable logistic, and Cox regression models.
This study included 12 720 women aged 24 to 78 years (mean [SD] age, 58.46 [12.45] years) with estrogen receptor–positive breast cancer, including 1073 women with SPAG5 transcript expression and 361 women with SPAG5 protein expression of locally advanced disease stage IIA through IIIC. Women with SPAG5 transcript and SPAG5 protein expressions achieved higher pathological complete response compared with those without SPAG5 transcript or SPAG5 protein expressions (transcript: odds ratio, 2.45 [95% CI, 1.71-3.51]; P < .001; protein: odds ratio, 7.32 [95% CI, 3.33-16.22]; P < .001). Adding adjuvant anthracycline chemotherapy to adjuvant endocrine therapy for SPAG5 mRNA expression in estrogen receptor–positive breast cancer was associated with prolonged 5-year distal relapse–free survival in patients without lymph node involvement (hazard ratio, 0.34 [95% CI, 0.14-0.87]; P = .03) and patients with lymph node involvement (hazard ratio, 0.35 [95% CI, 0.18-0.68]; P = .002) compared with receiving 5-year endocrine therapy alone. Mean (SD) SPAG5 transcript was found to be downregulated after 2 weeks of neoadjuvant endocrine therapy compared with pretreatment levels in 68 of 92 patients (74%) (0.23 [0.18] vs 0.34 [0.24]; P < .001).
Conclusions and Relevance
These findings suggest that SPAG5 transcript and SPAG5 protein expressions could be used to guide the optimal therapies for estrogen receptor–positive breast cancer. Retrospective and prospective clinical trials are warranted.
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