Impact of molecular testing in clinical practice in gynecologic cancers

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9 Scopus citations


Background: With the growing understanding of the molecular and genetic profiles of cancers, targeted treatments are increasingly utilized in personalized cancer care. The objective of this study was to determine how these advances have translated into practice by examining how often molecular profiling of gynecological tumors led to treatment changes. Methods: We identified women with gynecological cancers at our institution who had molecular tumor testing performed from November 2014 to June 2017. Clinicopathologic data were extracted from medical records. We determined (a) if molecular profiling identified actionable targets for which therapy is available, and (b) whether the patient's treatment course changed as a result of molecular profiling. Chi-square, Wilcoxon rank-sum, and Fisher's exact tests were used with a P < 0.05 considered statistically significant. Results: We identified 152 patients with gynecologic cancers who underwent molecular profiling. Of the 152 patients, 116 (76.3%) had actionable mutations identified, with 41 (35.3%) patients having a treatment change. Stratified by cancer type, molecular profiling most frequently identified an actionable target in patients with endometrial cancer (73.6%). Changes in treatment occurred most frequently in patients with endometrial cancer, 22 (56.4%), and ovarian cancers, 16 (39%), as compared to patients with cervical and vulvar cancer (P = 0.02). Of those patients who received a change in treatment, 39 patients (95.1%) received an FDA-approved therapeutic agent, while two patients (4.8%) were enrolled in a clinical trial. Conclusion: Molecular profiling in gynecologic cancers often identified at least one actionable mutation; however, only in a minority of these cases was the course of treatment changed. Further studies are needed to elucidate optimal timing for testing to best utilize actionable information.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2013-2019
Number of pages7
JournalCancer Medicine
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2019


  • Next generation sequence
  • cervical cancer
  • endometrial cancer
  • gynecologic cancers
  • ovarian cancer
  • personalized medicine
  • vulvar cancer

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Cancer Research


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