Sunitinib for taiwanese patients with gastrointestinal stromal tumor after imatinib treatment failure or intolerance

Yen Yang Chen, Chun Nan Yeh*, Chi Tung Cheng, Tsung Wen Chen, Kun Ming Rau, Yi Yin Jan, Miin Fu Chen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal Article peer-review

29 Scopus citations


AIM: To report preliminary results of the efficacy and safety of sunitinib in the management of Taiwanese gastrointestinal stromal tumors (GIST) patients facing imatinib mesylate (IM) intolerance or failure. METHODS: Between 2001 and May 2010, 199 Taiwanese patients with metastatic GIST were treated at Chang Gung Memorial Hospital. Among them, 23 (11.6%) patients receiving sunitinib were investigated. RESULTS: Sixteen male and 7 female patients with a median age of 59 years (range: 24-83 years) received sunitinib. Twenty-two GIST patients changed to sunitinib because of IM failure and 1 because of intolerance. The median duration of sunitinib administration was 6.0 mo (range: 2-29 mo). The clinical benefit was 65.2% [2 complete response (CR), 4 partial response (PR), and 9 stationary disease (SD); 15/23]. In 12 patients harboring mutations of the kit gene at exon 11, the clinical benefit rate (CR, PR, and SD) was 75.0% and 6 patients with tumors containing kit exon 9 mutations had a clinical benefit of 50.0% (not significant, P = 0.344). The progression free survival (PFS) and overall survival (OS) did not differ between patients whose GISTs had wild type, KIT exon 9, or KIT exon 11 mutations. Hand-foot syndrome was the most common cause of grade III adverse effect (26.1%), followed by anemia (17.4%), and neutropenia (13.0%). During the median 7.5-mo follow-up after sunitinib use, the median PFS and OS of these 23 GIST patients after sunitinib treatment were 8.4 and 14.1 mo, respectively. CONCLUSION: Sunitinib appears to be an effective treatment for Taiwanese with IM-resistant/intolerant GISTs and induced a sustained clinical benefit in more than 50% of Taiwanese advanced GIST patients.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2113-2119
Number of pages7
JournalWorld Journal of Gastroenterology
Issue number16
StatePublished - 28 04 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • Failure or intolerance
  • Gastrointestinal stromal tumors
  • Imaitinib
  • Suintinib


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