Estimating survival in patients with lung cancer and brain metastases an update of the graded prognostic assessment for lung cancer using molecular markers (Lung-molGPA)

Paul W. Sperduto, T. Jonathan Yang, Kathryn Beal, Hubert Pan, Paul D. Brown, Ananta Bangdiwala, Ryan Shanley, Norman Yeh, Laurie E. Gaspar, Steve Braunstein, Penny Sneed, John Boyle, John P. Kirkpatrick, Kimberley S. Mak, Helen A. Shih, Alex Engelman, David Roberge, Nils D. Arvold, Brian Alexander, Mark M. AwadJoseph Contessa, Veronica Chiang, John Hardie, Daniel Ma, Emil Lou, William Sperduto, Minesh P. Mehta

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

506 Scopus citations


IMPORTANCE: Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer-related mortality in the United States and worldwide. As systemic therapies improve, patients with lung cancer live longer and thus are at increased risk for brain metastases. Understanding how prognosis varies across this heterogeneous patient population is essential to individualize care and design future clinical trials. OBJECTIVE: To update the current Diagnosis-Specific Graded Prognostic Assessment (DS-GPA) for patients with non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) and brain metastases. The DS-GPA is based on data from patients diagnosed between 1985 and 2005, and we set out to update it by incorporating more recently reported gene and molecular alteration data for patients with NSCLC and brain metastases. This new index is called the Lung-mol GPA. DESIGN, SETTING, AND PARTICIPANTS: This is a multi-institutional retrospective database analysis of 2186 patients diagnosed between 2006 and 2014 with NSCLC and newly diagnosed brain metastases. The multivariable analyses took place between December 2015 and May 2016, and all prognostic factors were weighted for significance by hazard ratios. Significant factors were included in the updated Lung-molGPA prognostic index. MAIN OUTCOMES AND MEASURES The main outcome was survival. Multiple Cox regression was used to select and weight prognostic factors in proportion to their hazard ratios. Log rank tests were used to compare adjacent classes and to compare overall survival for adenocarcinoma vs nonadenocarcinoma groups. RESULTS: The original DS-GPA was based on 4 factors found in 1833 patients with NSCLC and brain metastases diagnosed between 1985 and 2005: patient age, Karnofsky Performance Status, extracranial metastases, and number of brain metastases. The patients studied for the creation of the DS-GPA had a median survival of 7 months from the time of initial treatment of brain metastases. To design the updated Lung-mol GPA, we analyzed data from 2186 patients from 2006 through 2014 with NSCLC and newly diagnosed brain metastases (1521 adenocarcinoma and 665 nonadenocarcinoma). Significant prognostic factors included the original 4 factors used in the DS-GPA index plus 2 new factors: EGFR and ALK alterations in patients with adenocarcinoma (mutation status was not routinely tested for nonadenocarcinoma). The overall median survival for the cohort in the present study was 12 months, and those with NSCLC-adenocarcinoma and Lung-molGPA scores of 3.5 to 4.0 had a median survival of nearly 4 years. CONCLUSIONS AND RELEVANCE: In recent years, patient survival and physicians' ability to predict survival in NSCLC with brain metastases has improved significantly. The updated Lung-molGPA incorporating gene alteration data into the DS-GPA is a user-friendly tool that may facilitate clinical decision making and appropriate stratification of future clinical trials.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)827-831
Number of pages5
JournalJAMA Oncology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2017

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016 American Medical Association. All rights reserved.


Dive into the research topics of 'Estimating survival in patients with lung cancer and brain metastases an update of the graded prognostic assessment for lung cancer using molecular markers (Lung-molGPA)'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this