Cardiac safety of paclitaxel plus trastuzumab and pertuzumab in patients with HER2-positivemetastatic breast cancer
Dual anti-HER2 therapy with trastuzumab and pertuzumab in combination with taxane-based chemotherapy improves overall survival in patients with metastatic HER2-positive breast cancer. There is a critical need to investigate the potential cardiotoxicity of dual anti-HER2 blockade, given the importance of HER2 signaling in cardiac homeostasis and stress response. Global longitudinal strain and cardiac biomarkers have been proposed as adjuncts to left ventricular ejection fraction for the early detection of cardiotoxicity. In this phase II study of combination trastuzumab and pertuzumab with paclitaxel, no clinically significant change was observed in global longitudinal strain or cardiac biomarkers. These results further support the cardiac safety of dual anti-HER2 blockade previously reported in the CLEOPATRA study. The findings in the current study also call into question the role of intensive cardiac monitoring among patients treated with anti-HER2 therapy in the absence of anthracyclines. Less frequent cardiac assessments could lead to a reduction in unnecessary treatment interruption and is an important consideration given the rise in medical expenditures, but this requires further investigation.