Therapeutic Impact of Cytoreductive Surgery and Irradiation of Posterior Fossa Ependymoma in the Molecular Era: A Retrospective Multicohort Analysis.

Publication Type:

Journal Article


Ramaswamy, Vijay; Hielscher, Thomas; Mack, Stephen C; Lassaletta, Alvaro; Lin, Tong; Pajtler, Kristian W; Jones, David T W; Luu, Betty; Cavalli, Florence M G; Aldape, Kenneth; Remke, Marc; Mynarek, Martin; Rutkowski, Stefan; Gururangan, Sridharan; McLendon, Roger E; Lipp, Eric S; Dunham, Christopher; Hukin, Juliette; Eisenstat, David D; Fulton, Dorcas; van Landeghem, Frank K H; Santi, Mariarita; van Veelen, Marie-Lise C; Van Meir, Erwin G; Osuka, Satoru; Fan, Xing; Muraszko, Karin M; Tirapelli, Daniela P C; Oba-Shinjo, Sueli M; Marie, Suely K N; Carlotti, Carlos G; Lee, Ji Yeoun; Nageswara Rao, Amulya A; Giannini, Caterina; Faria, Claudia C; Nunes, Sofia; Mora, Jaume; Hamilton, Ronald L; Hauser, Peter; Jabado, Nada; Petrecca, Kevin; Jung, Shin; Massimi, Luca; Zollo, Massimo; Cinalli, Giuseppe; Bognár, László; Klekner, Almos; Hortobágyi, Tibor; Leary, Sarah; Ermoian, Ralph P; Olson, James M; Leonard, Jeffrey R; Gardner, Corrine; Grajkowska, Wieslawa A; Chambless, Lola B; Cain, Jason; Eberhart, Charles G; Ahsan, Sama; Massimino, Maura; Giangaspero, Felice; Buttarelli, Francesca R; Packer, Roger J; Emery, Lyndsey; Yong, William H; Soto, Horacio; Liau, Linda M; Everson, Richard; Grossbach, Andrew; Shalaby, Tarek; Grotzer, Michael; Karajannis, Matthias A; Zagzag, David; Wheeler, Helen; von Hoff, Katja; Alonso, Marta M; Tuñon, Teresa; Schüller, Ulrich; Zitterbart, Karel; Sterba, Jaroslav; Chan, Jennifer A; Guzman, Miguel; Elbabaa, Samer K; Colman, Howard; Dhall, Girish; Fisher, Paul G; Fouladi, Maryam; Gajjar, Amar; Goldman, Stewart; Hwang, Eugene; Kool, Marcel; Ladha, Harshad; Vera-Bolanos, Elizabeth; Wani, Khalida; Lieberman, Frank; Mikkelsen, Tom; Omuro, Antonio M; Pollack, Ian F; Prados, Michael; Robins, H Ian; Soffietti, Riccardo; Wu, Jing; Metellus, Phillipe; Tabori, Uri; Bartels, Ute; Bouffet, Eric; Hawkins, Cynthia E; Rutka, James T; Dirks, Peter; Pfister, Stefan M; Merchant, Thomas E; Gilbert, Mark R; Armstrong, Terri S; Korshunov, Andrey; Ellison, David W; Taylor, Michael D


Journal of clinical oncology : official journal of the American Society of Clinical Oncology, Volume 34, Issue 21, p.2468-77 (2016)


PURPOSE: Posterior fossa ependymoma comprises two distinct molecular variants termed EPN_PFA and EPN_PFB that have a distinct biology and natural history. The therapeutic value of cytoreductive surgery and radiation therapy for posterior fossa ependymoma after accounting for molecular subgroup is not known. METHODS: Four independent nonoverlapping retrospective cohorts of posterior fossa ependymomas (n = 820) were profiled using genome-wide methylation arrays. Risk stratification models were designed based on known clinical and newly described molecular biomarkers identified by multivariable Cox proportional hazards analyses. RESULTS: Molecular subgroup is a powerful independent predictor of outcome even when accounting for age or treatment regimen. Incompletely resected EPN_PFA ependymomas have a dismal prognosis, with a 5-year progression-free survival ranging from 26.1% to 56.8% across all four cohorts. Although first-line (adjuvant) radiation is clearly beneficial for completely resected EPN_PFA, a substantial proportion of patients with EPN_PFB can be cured with surgery alone, and patients with relapsed EPN_PFB can often be treated successfully with delayed external-beam irradiation. CONCLUSION: The most impactful biomarker for posterior fossa ependymoma is molecular subgroup affiliation, independent of other demographic or treatment variables. However, both EPN_PFA and EPN_PFB still benefit from increased extent of resection, with the survival rates being particularly poor for subtotally resected EPN_PFA, even with adjuvant radiation therapy. Patients with EPN_PFB who undergo gross total resection are at lower risk for relapse and should be considered for inclusion in a randomized clinical trial of observation alone with radiation reserved for those who experience recurrence.