Masitinib in advanced gastrointestinal stromal tumor (GIST) after failure of imatinib: A randomized controlled open-label trial

A. Adenis, J. Y. Blay, B. Bui-Nguyen, O. Bouché, F. Bertucci, N. Isambert, E. Bompas, L. Chaigneau, J. Domont, I. Ray-Coquard, A. Blésius, B. A. Van tine, V. R. Bulusu, P. Dubreuil, C. D. Mansfield, Y. Acin, A. Moussy, O. Hermine, A. Le Cesne

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

49 Scopus citations


Background: Masitinib is a highly selective tyrosine kinase inhibitor with activity against the main oncogenic drivers of gastrointestinal stromal tumor (GIST). Masitinib was evaluated in patients with advanced GIST after imatinib failure or intolerance. Patients and methods: Prospective, multicenter, randomized, open-label trial. Patients with inoperable, advanced imatinib-resistant GIST were randomized (1: 1) to receive masitinib (12 mg/kg/day) or sunitinib (50 mg/day 4-weeks-on/2-weeks-off) until progression, intolerance, or refusal. Primary efficacy analysis was noncomparative, testing whether masitinib attained a median progression-free survival (PFS) (blind centrally reviewed RECIST) threshold of >3 months according to the lower bound of the 90% unilateral confidence interval (CI). Secondary analyses on overall survival (OS) and PFS were comparative with results presented according to a two-sided 95% CI. Results: Forty-four patients were randomized to receive masitinib (n = 23) or sunitinib (n = 21). Median follow-up was 14 months. Patients receiving masitinib experienced less toxicity than those receiving sunitinib, with significantly lower occurrence of severe adverse events (52% versus 91%, respectively, P = 0.008). Median PFS (central RECIST) for the noncomparative primary analysis in the masitinib treatment arm was 3.71 months (90% CI 3.65). Secondary analyses showed that median OS was significantly longer for patients receiving masitinib followed by post-progression addition of sunitinib when compared against patients treated directly with sunitinib in second-line [hazard ratio (HR) = 0.27, 95% CI 0.09-0.85, P = 0.016]. This improvement was sustainable as evidenced by 26-month follow-up OS data (HR = 0.40, 95% CI 0.16-0.96, P = 0.033); an additional 12.4 months survival advantage being reported for the masitinib treatment arm. Risk of progression while under treatment with masitinib was in the same range as for sunitinib (HR = 1.1, 95% CI 0.6-2.2, P = 0.833). Conclusions: Primary efficacy analysis ensured the masitinib treatment arm could satisfy a prespecified PFS threshold. Secondary efficacy analysis showed that masitinib followed by the standard of care generated a statistically significant survival benefit over standard of care. Encouraging median OS and safety data from this well-controlled and appropriately designed randomized trial indicate a positive benefit-risk ratio. Further development of masitinib in imatinib-resistant/intolerant patients with advanced GIST is warranted.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1762-1769
Number of pages8
JournalAnnals of Oncology
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 2014


  • GIST
  • Imatinib-resistant GIST
  • Phase II study
  • Tyrosine kinase inhibitor


Dive into the research topics of 'Masitinib in advanced gastrointestinal stromal tumor (GIST) after failure of imatinib: A randomized controlled open-label trial'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this