Dr. Eng on the Rationale for Studying the Impact of RAS Mutations in Early Onset Resectable CRC

Cathy Eng, MD, FACP, FASCO, discusses the rationale for studying the impact of RAS mutations in patients with early onset resectable colorectal cancer.

Cathy Eng, MD, FACP, FASCO, the David H. Johnson Chair in Surgical and Medical Oncology; co-leader of the Gastrointestinal (GI) Cancer Research Program; professor of medicine in hematology and oncology; co-director of GI Oncology; vice chair of the SWOG GI Committee; and director of the VICC Young Adult Cancers Initiative at Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center, discusses the rationale for studying the impact of RAS mutations in patients with early onset resectable colorectal cancer (CRC).

Numerous trials have been conducted and completed attempting to examine the overall survival of this patient population, Eng says. As such, Eng along with her colleagues from The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, including Alexandre A. Jácome, MD, PhD, and Jean-Nicolas Vauthey, MD, designed a study to examine outcomes within the resectable patient population.

Investigators focused on an early onset group of patients, including those who were under 50 years of age, while those who were over 50 years old were considered to be late onset, Eng explains.

Additionally, the impact of RAS status on patients was also studied. KRAS is expressed in 35% to 50% of patients, with extended RAS occurring in even fewer. However, despite this, the majority of patients will be RAS mutant, according to Eng. The goal of the research was to determine whether RAS tumor type has an impact on overall outcome in the resectable early onset patient population, Eng concludes.