Evaluation of the Feasibility and Clinical Relevance of Liquid Biopsy in Patients With Suspicious Metastatic Lung Cancer (LIBELULE)

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    Centre Leon Berard
Updated on 9 February 2022
lung cancer
cancer treatment


Lung cancer is diagnosed at metastatic stage in 60% of the cases. For these patients, first-line treatment is based on histology and molecular characterization of non-squamous non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). Thus, quality and quantity of tumor tissue are crucial to determine the appropriate treatment (targeted therapies, chemotherapy and immunotherapy).

However, in routine practice, tissue quality and quantity can be limited (25%), resulting in the need for tumor rebiopsy for molecular analysis. Therefore, lung cancer patients often experience substantial delays before treatment initiation that may be associated with worse patient experience of subsequent cancer care and poorer clinical outcomes.

"Liquid biopsies" (LB) are used to detect genomic alterations in cell-free circulating DNA (cfDNA). Since very recently, they are routinely used in reference centers for the detection of EGFR-mutations when tissue is not sufficient for molecular characterization. Importantly, the feasibility and clinical relevance of systematic liquid biopsies in routine practice has never been evaluated in patients with suspicious advanced lung cancer.

Investigators hypothesize that using systematic LB in patients with clinical suspicion of metastatic lung cancer may reduce time-to-treatment initiation and avoid tissue rebiopsy.

Investigators performed a retrospective study including 250 NSCLC patients treated in a tertiary Cancer Center and in the University Hospital of Lyon, France. The mean time-to-appropriate frontline treatment initiation (TTI) was 42+/-22.5 days. With the use of LB at the time of first consultation, the investigators believe it is possible to reduce the mean TTI down to 33 days (21% reduction in TTI) in the overall population with suspicious metastatic lung cancer, including a 50% and 40% reduction in TTI for EGFR/ALK/ROS1/BRAF V600E subgroups and KRAS/LKB1/ERBB2/c-MET/BRAF non V600E subgroups, respectively.

Investigators therefore designed a "real-life" randomized study to evaluate the feasibility and clinical relevance of LB to decrease the TTI, which may in turn improve patients' outcome. Genomic analyses of circulating cfDNA will be performed using a robust and highly sensitive technology (InVision), that profiles the presence of genomic aberrations in a panel of 35 genes including mutations, insertion/deletions and rearrangements, including all actionable alterations required to initiate the appropriate first-line therapy (EGFR-, ALK-, ROS1 and BRAF V600E).

Condition Metastatic Lung Cancer
Treatment InvisionFirst® molecular panel
Clinical Study IdentifierNCT03721120
SponsorCentre Leon Berard
Last Modified on9 February 2022


Yes No Not Sure

Inclusion Criteria

Age 18 years
Patients with clinico-radiological suspicious presentation of stage IV lung cancer
No prior chemotherapy for locally advanced or metastatic NSCLC
Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group (ECOG) Performance Status 0-2 (Appendix 2)
Life expectancy > 12 weeks
No contraindication to systemic lung cancer treatment
Covered by a medical insurance
Signed informed consent prior to any study-specific procedure
No prior biopsy or cytology for lung cancer diagnosis

Exclusion Criteria

Pregnant or breastfeeding women
Patient concurrently using other approved or investigational antineoplastic agents
Major concurrent disease affecting cardiovascular system, liver, kidneys, hematopoietic system or else considered as clinically important by the investigator and that could be incompatible with patient's participation in this trial or would likely interfere with study procedures or results
Prior history of malignancies other than study disease (except for basal cell or squamous cell carcinoma of the skin or carcinoma in situ of the cervix) unless the patient has been free of the disease for at least 3 years
Patient requiring tutorship or curatorship
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