All HER2-negative breast cancer patients need gBRCA testing : cost-effectiveness and clinical benefits

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

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  • Huai-liang Wu
  • Zi-yin Luo
  • Zong-lin He
  • Yue Gong
  • Miao Mo
  • Guang-yu Liu


Original languageEnglish
Journal / PublicationBritish Journal of Cancer
Online published23 Dec 2022
Publication statusOnline published - 23 Dec 2022


BACKGROUND: The OlympiA trial demonstrated the benefits of adjuvant usage of olaparib for high-risk patients with human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2)-negative breast cancer (BC) and germline BRCA (gBRCA) mutation. This provoked thoughts on the clinical criteria of gBRCA testing. This study aims to estimate the costs and benefits of gBRCA testing and adjuvant olaparib therapy for patients with triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC) and hormone-receptor (HR)-positive and HER2-negative BC in China and the United States of America (USA).

METHODS: We used a Markov chain decision tree analytic model to compare three gBRCA screening policies in China and the USA: (1) no gBRCA testing; (2) selected gBRCA testing and (3) universal gBRCA testing for nonmetastatic TNBC and HR-positive HER2-negative BC patients. We modelled the benefit of systemic therapy and risk-reducing surgeries among patients identified with pathogenic or likely pathogenic variants (PVs) in BRCA1 and BRCA2.

RESULTS: Changing from the selected gBRCA testing to the universal gBRCA testing in TNBC patients is cost-effective, with the incremental cost-effectiveness ratios (ICERs) being 10991.1 and 56518.2 USD/QALY in China and the USA, respectively. Expanding universal gBRCA testing to HR-positive HER2-negative BC and TNBC patients has ICERs of 2023.3 and 16611.1 USD/QALY in China and the USA, respectively.

DISCUSSION: By performing gBRCA testing on all HER2-negative BC patients, adjuvant olaparib can be offered to high-risk patients with a PV in BRCA1 or BRCA2. These patients are also candidates for risk-reducing surgeries, an important aspect of their survivorship care, and these interventions can improve survival outcomes. With the willingness-to-pay thresholds being 31,500.0 and 100,000.0 USD per QALY gained in China and the USA, respectively, universal gBRCA testing is likely cost-effective for all HER2-negative BC patients. This simplified criterion of gBRCA testing for BC is recommended for adoption by current guidelines in China and the USA.

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