Purpose

This randomized phase III trial studies how well pembrolizumab works in treating patients with triple-negative breast cancer. Immunotherapy with monoclonal antibodies, such as pembrolizumab, may help the body's immune system attack the cancer, and may interfere with the ability of tumor cells to grow and spread.

Conditions

Eligibility

Eligible Ages
Over 18 Years
Eligible Genders
All
Accepts Healthy Volunteers
No

Criteria


Inclusion Criteria:

- STEP 1 REGISTRATION

- Patients must have histologically confirmed estrogen receptor (ER)-, progesterone
receptor (PR)- and HER2-negative (triple-negative, TNBC) or ER-, PR- weakly positive
and/or HER2- equivocal status and must not have received and not be planning to
receive adjuvant anti-HER2 or endocrine therapies after completion of neoadjuvant
chemotherapy; patients who are HER2-positive by American Society of Clinical Oncology
(ASCO) College of American Pathologists (CAP) guidelines are ineligible; HER2-negative
and HER2-equivocal cases as per ASCO CAP guidelines that do not receive HER2-targeted
therapy are eligible; patients with weakly ER or PR positive disease, defined as ER
and/or PR less than or equal to (=<) 5% by immunohistochemistry, are eligible if the
treating physician considers the patient not eligible for adjuvant endocrine therapy;
residual disease must be >= 1 cm in greatest dimension, and/or have positive lymph
nodes (ypN1mi, ypN1, ypN2, ypN3) observed on pathologic exam

- NOTE: If the ER and/or HER2 results are discordant between the initial,
pre-chemotherapy, and post-chemotherapy surgical tissue, the receptor status of
the residual disease has to be used to determine eligibility.
Immunohistochemistry (IHC)-positive isolated tumor cells in the lymph node (N0
[i+]) are not considered node-positive and these patients also must have >= 1 cm
residual invasive cancer in the breast to be eligible.

- Patients must not have metastatic disease (i.e., must be clinically M0 or Mx; systemic
staging studies with imaging should follow routine practice as per National
Comprehensive Cancer Network [NCCN] and ASCO guidelines); patients must not have
locally recurrent disease

- It is preferred that axillary lymph node sampling is performed after completion of
neoadjuvant chemotherapy to allow more accurate assessment of pathologic response;
patients must have a complete axillary lymph node dissection (ALND) after neoadjuvant
chemotherapy in the following situations (except for patients participating in the
Alliance A11202 trial):

- Patients had documented pathologic involvement of the axillary nodes (fine needle
aspiration [FNA] or core biopsy) before neoadjuvant chemotherapy and had sentinel
node biopsy after neoadjuvant chemotherapy with positive sentinel node(s)

- Patient had documented pathologic involvement of the axillary nodes (FNA or core
biopsy) before neoadjuvant chemotherapy and had only 1 sentinel lymph node
removed after neoadjuvant chemotherapy

- NOTE: Patients who undergo sentinel node biopsy before starting neoadjuvant
treatment and do not undergo post neoadjuvant assessment of the axillary
nodes or who have negative axillary nodes on post neoadjuvant assessment
must have >= 1 cm residual invasive cancer in the breast after completion of
neoadjuvant chemotherapy

- Patients must have a minimum of five, available unstained formalin-fixed
paraffin-embedded (FFPE) slides (4-5 micron thickness) from the residual
(post-neoadjuvant) invasive tumor in primary site or lymph node; (these will be
submitted to a central laboratory to determine PD-L1 expression); the tumor tissue
must be adequate for PD-L1 testing, which typically requires a minimum of 100 cancer
cells per slide; local PD-L1 results, even if available, will not substitute for
central testing

- NOTE: Initial order for specimen kits should be placed at least two weeks prior
to registering the first patient at each site

- Patients must be offered the opportunity to participate in specimen banking

- English-speaking patients must be willing to participate in the BAHO substudy

- Patients must have had neoadjuvant chemotherapy followed by surgery; the choice of
neoadjuvant chemotherapy is determined by the treating physician; we recommend
following the National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) treatment guidelines for
TNBC; patients who cannot complete all planned treatment cycles for any reason are
considered high risk and therefore are eligible for the study if they have residual
disease; patients must have resolution of adverse event(s) of the most recent prior
chemotherapy to grade 1 or less, except alopecia and =< grade 2 neuropathy which are
allowed

- Patients may receive post-operative (adjuvant) chemotherapy for up to 24 weeks of
duration (e.g. 8 cycles of capecitabine as in the Capecitabine for Residual Cancer as
Adjuvant Therapy (CREATE-X) trial; the 24-week duration does not include treatment
delays) after completion of surgery at the discretion of the treating physician;
co-enrollment to EA1131 is allowed, provided that patients complete or discontinue
adjuvant chemotherapy prior to step 1 registration; at the time of step 1
registration, patients must have resolution of adverse event(s) of the most recent
prior chemotherapy to =< grade 1, except alopecia and =< grade 2 neuropathy which are
allowed; patients that have received adjuvant chemotherapy (including via
co-enrollment to EA1131) must be registered to step 1 within 35 days after final dose
of adjuvant chemotherapy

- Patients must have completed their final breast surgery (rendering them free from
disease) with clear resection margins for invasive cancer and DCIS within the
following timelines:

- 90 days prior to step 1 screening registration for patients not receiving
post-operative (adjuvant) chemotherapy OR

- 270 days prior to step 1 screening registration for patients who have received
post-operative (adjuvant) chemotherapy Positive margins are allowed only if the
surgical team of the patient deems further resection impossible

- Patients for whom radiation therapy (RT) to the affected breast or chest wall and
regional nodal areas is clinically indicated as per NCCN treatment guidelines, should
receive routine RT after randomization when possible, and receive MK-3475
(pembrolizumab) concurrent with RT, if randomized to the experimental arm; however,
routine RT administered, or initiated, prior to registration is also allowed; MK-3475
(pembrolizumab) may be added to ongoing radiation, or started after its completion, if
randomized to the experimental arm, provided there are no > grade 1 radiation-related
skin toxicities and provided that no radiosensitizing chemotherapy is being
administered; co-enrollment in the Alliance A221505 (NCT03414970) and A011202
(NCT01901094) trials or in the NSABP-B51 (NCT01872975) trial is allowed, but patients
must not be planning to receive radiation therapy given on these trials concurrently
with MK-3475 (pembrolizumab) treatment on S1418/BR006; whether or not patient will
receive RT and the extent of intended RT must be specified at time of registration;
NOTE: Patients who receive post-operative chemotherapy may receive radiation therapy
before or after the chemotherapy; a short course of reduced dose chemotherapy or other
agents concomitant with radiation for radiation sensitization is not considered to be
adjuvant chemotherapy

- Patients must not have had prior immunotherapy with anti-PD-L1, anti-PD-1, anti-CTLA4
or similar drugs; patients must not be planning to receive any of the prohibited
therapies during the screening or treatment phases of the study

- Patients must not be planning to receive concomitantly other biologic therapy,
hormonal therapy, other chemotherapy, surgery or other anti-cancer therapy except
radiation therapy while receiving treatment on this protocol; however, patients
receiving extended adjuvant endocrine therapy for an earlier ER positive breast cancer
treated with curative intent and without recurrence for at least 5 years may continue
with their endocrine therapy; elective surgery or surgery that is not related to
cancer therapy is allowed, at the discretion of the treating investigator

- Patients must have Zubrod performance status =< 2

- Patients must not have a history of (non-infectious) pneumonitis that required
steroids or evidence of active pneumonitis within 2 years prior to registration

- Patients must not have active autoimmune disease that has required systemic treatment
in past 2 years (i.e., with use of disease modifying agents, corticosteroids or
immunosuppressive drugs); replacement therapy (e.g., thyroxine for pre-existing
hypothyroidism, insulin for type I diabetes mellitus, or physiologic corticosteroid
replacement therapy for adrenal or pituitary insufficiency, etc.) is not considered a
form of systemic treatment

- Patients must not have received live vaccines within 30 days prior to registration;
examples of live vaccines include, but are not limited to, the following: measles,
mumps, rubella, chicken pox, shingles, yellow fever, rabies, Bacillus Calmette-Guerin
(BCG), and typhoid (oral) vaccine; seasonal influenza vaccines for injection are
generally killed virus vaccines and are allowed; however, intranasal influenza
vaccines (e.g., Flu-Mist) are live attenuated vaccines, and are not allowed

- Patients must not have known active hepatitis B virus (HBV) or hepatitis C virus (HCV)
infection prior to registration; patients who have completed curative therapy for HCV
are eligible; patients with known human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection are
eligible if they meet each of the following 3 criteria:

- CD4 counts >= 350 mm^3

- Serum HIV viral load of < 25,000 IU/ml and

- Treated on a stable antiretroviral regimen

- No other prior invasive malignancy is allowed except for the following: adequately
treated basal (or squamous cell) skin cancer, in situ breast or cervical cancer; stage
I or II invasive cancer treated with a curative intent without evidence of disease
recurrence for at least five years

- Patients must have complete history and physical examination within 28 days prior to
registration

- Patients must be informed of the investigational nature of this study and must sign
and give written informed consent for this protocol in accordance with institutional
and federal guidelines

- As a part of the Oncology Patient Enrollment Network (OPEN) registration process the
treating institution's identity is provided in order to ensure that the current
(within 365 days) date of institutional review board approval for this study has been
entered in the system

- STEP 2 REGISTRATION

- Patients must not be registered to step 2 until receiving confirmation from the
Southwest Oncology Group (SWOG) Statistical and Data Management Center that the
patient's tissue specimen was adequate for PD-L1 testing; patients must be registered
within 14 days of receiving the e-mail notification confirming submission was
evaluable for PD-L1 status

- Absolute neutrophil count (ANC) >= 1,500 microliter (mcL) (obtained within 28 days
prior to step 2 registration)

- Platelets >= 100,000/mcL (obtained within 28 days prior to step 2 registration)

- Hemoglobin >= 9 g/dL (obtained within 28 days prior to step 2 registration)

- A serum thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) and/or free T4 must be obtained within 28
days prior to step 2 registration to obtain a baseline value

- Total bilirubin =< 1.5 x institutional upper limit of normal (IULN) (except Gilbert's
syndrome, who must have a total bilirubin < 3.0 mg/dL) (obtained within 28 days prior
to step 2 registration)

- Serum glutamic-oxaloacetic transaminase (SGOT) (aspartate aminotransferase [AST]) or
serum glutamate pyruvate transaminase (SGPT) (alanine aminotransferase [ALT]) =< 2.5 x
IULN (obtained within 28 days prior to step 2 registration)

- Alkaline phosphatase =< 2.5 x IULN (obtained within 28 days prior to step 2
registration)

- Serum creatinine =< IULN OR measured or calculated creatinine clearance >= 60 mL/min
(obtained within 28 days prior to step 2 registration)

- Women of childbearing potential must have a negative urine or serum pregnancy test
within 28 day prior to registration; women/men of reproductive potential must have
agreed to use an effective contraceptive method for the course of the study through
120 days after the last dose of study medication; should a woman become pregnant or
suspect she is pregnant while she or her partner is participating in this study, she
should inform her treating physician immediately; a woman is considered to be of
"reproductive potential" if she has had menses at any time in the preceding 12
consecutive months; in addition to routine contraceptive methods, "effective
contraception" also includes heterosexual celibacy and surgery intended to prevent
pregnancy (or with a side-effect of pregnancy prevention) defined as a hysterectomy,
bilateral oophorectomy, bilateral tubal ligation, or vasectomy; however, if at any
point a previously celibate patient chooses to become heterosexually active during the
time period for use of contraceptive measures outlined in the protocol, he/she is
responsible for beginning contraceptive measures; patients must not be pregnant or
nursing; women of childbearing potential must plan to have a urine or serum pregnancy
test within 72 hours prior to receiving the first dose of study medication; if the
urine test is positive or cannot be confirmed as negative, a negative serum pregnancy
test will be required

- Patients must not have an active infection requiring systemic therapy at the time of
starting therapy

- Site must verify that there is no known change in the step 1 eligibility since initial
registration

Study Design

Phase
Phase 3
Study Type
Interventional
Allocation
Randomized
Intervention Model
Parallel Assignment
Primary Purpose
Treatment
Masking
None (Open Label)

Arm Groups

ArmDescriptionAssigned Intervention
Experimental
Arm I (observation)
Patients receive no treatment but are monitored at standard clinical intervals during first year after randomization. Patients are examined every 12 weeks for 1 year, every 6 months for 4 years, and then annually for 5 years. Patients may undergo radiation therapy within 12 weeks of last breast cancer operation or after treatment.
  • Other: Laboratory Biomarker Analysis
    Correlative studies
  • Other: Patient Observation
    Undergo standard monitoring
    Other names:
    • Active Surveillance
    • deferred therapy
    • expectant management
    • observation
    • Watchful Waiting
  • Other: Quality-of-Life Assessment
    Ancillary studies
    Other names:
    • Quality of Life Assessment
  • Other: Questionnaire Administration
    Ancillary studies
  • Radiation: Radiation Therapy
    Undergo radiation therapy
    Other names:
    • Cancer Radiotherapy
    • Irradiate
    • Irradiated
    • irradiation
    • Radiation
    • Radiation Therapy, NOS
    • Radiotherapeutics
    • Radiotherapy
    • RT
    • Therapy, Radiation
Experimental
Arm II (pembrolizumab)
Patients receive pembrolizumab IV over 30 minutes on days 1 and 22. Cycles repeat every 42 days for 52 weeks in the absence of disease progression or unacceptable toxicity. Patients may undergo radiation therapy within 12 weeks of last breast cancer operation or after treatment.
  • Other: Laboratory Biomarker Analysis
    Correlative studies
  • Biological: Pembrolizumab
    Given IV
    Other names:
    • Keytruda
    • Lambrolizumab
    • MK-3475
    • SCH 900475
  • Other: Quality-of-Life Assessment
    Ancillary studies
    Other names:
    • Quality of Life Assessment
  • Other: Questionnaire Administration
    Ancillary studies
  • Radiation: Radiation Therapy
    Undergo radiation therapy
    Other names:
    • Cancer Radiotherapy
    • Irradiate
    • Irradiated
    • irradiation
    • Radiation
    • Radiation Therapy, NOS
    • Radiotherapeutics
    • Radiotherapy
    • RT
    • Therapy, Radiation

Recruiting Locations

Montefiore Medical Center-Einstein Campus
Bronx, New York 10461
Contact:
Site Public Contact
718-379-6866
aaraiza@montefiore.org

Montefiore Medical Center-Weiler Hospital
Bronx, New York 10461
Contact:
Site Public Contact
718-379-6866
aaraiza@montefiore.org

More Details

Status
Recruiting
Sponsor
National Cancer Institute (NCI)

Study Contact

Detailed Description

PRIMARY OBJECTIVE:

I. To compare invasive disease-free survival (IDFS) of patients with triple-negative (TNBC) or low estrogen receptor (ER)-positive and/or HER2 borderline breast cancer who have >= 1 cm residual invasive breast cancer and/or positive lymph nodes (ypN1mi, ypN1, ypN2, ypN3) after neoadjuvant chemotherapy randomized to receive 1 year of MK-3475 (pembrolizumab) adjuvant therapy compared to no MK-3475 (pembrolizumab), in both the entire study population and also in the PD-L1 positive subset.

SECONDARY OBJECTIVES:

I. To compare the effects of MK-3475 (pembrolizumab) on overall survival (OS) and distant recurrence-free survival (DRFS) between the two randomized arms for the PD-L1 positive patients and then all patients.

II. To assess the toxicity and tolerability of MK-3475 (pembrolizumab) in this patient population with or without radiation therapy.

BEHAVIORAL AND HEALTH OUTCOMES (BAHO) STUDY OBJECTIVES:

I. To examine the association between biomarkers of inflammation and quality of life and patient reported outcomes between the two groups during and at the end of therapy.

II. To examine the long-term and late effects of treatment on patient-reported outcomes.

ADDITIONAL OBJECTIVE:

I. To collect tissue and whole blood for processing and banking in anticipation of future correlative studies in this patient population.

OUTLINE: Patients are randomized to 1 of 2 arms.

ARM I (OBSERVATION): Patients receive no treatment but are monitored at standard clinical intervals during first year after randomization. Patients are examined every 12 weeks for 1 year, and every 6 months for 4 years, then annually for 5 years.

ARM II (PEMBROLIZUMAB): Patients receive pembrolizumab intravenously (IV) over 30 minutes on days 1 and 22. Cycles repeat every 42 days for 52 weeks in the absence of disease progression or unacceptable toxicity.

All patients may undergo radiation therapy within 12 weeks of last breast cancer operation or after treatment.

After completion of study treatment, patients are followed up every 6 months for 5 years, then annually thereafter until 10 years from treatment randomization.

Notice

Study information shown on this site is derived from ClinicalTrials.gov (a public registry operated by the National Institutes of Health). The listing of studies provided is not certain to be all studies for which you might be eligible. Furthermore, study eligibility requirements can be difficult to understand and may change over time, so it is wise to speak with your medical care provider and individual research study teams when making decisions related to participation.