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01.12.2018 | Case report | Ausgabe 1/2018 Open Access

BMC Cancer 1/2018

Efficacy of T-DM1 for leptomeningeal and brain metastases in a HER2 positive metastatic breast cancer patient: new directions for systemic therapy - a case report and literature review

BMC Cancer > Ausgabe 1/2018
Giuseppina Rosaria Rita Ricciardi, Alessandro Russo, Tindara Franchina, Silvia Schifano, Giampiero Mastroeni, Anna Santacaterina, Vincenzo Adamo



Herein, we report a complete response after whole brain radiotherapy (WBRT) and concomitant T-DM1 in a patient with HER2-positive metastatic breast cancer (MBC) and extensive brain and leptomeningeal involvement.

Case presentation

A 46 years old Caucasian woman with HER2-positive MBC and no baseline CNS involvement, started in August 2015 1st line therapy with Pertuzumab-Trastuzumab-Docetaxel, with partial response. However, in April 2016 the patient eventually progressed with emergence of brain and leptomeningeal metastases. Hence, she started in May 2016 2nd line therapy with T-DM1 and concomitant WBRT, with complete response (CR) after 3 courses of therapy, with complete resolution of neurological symptoms and no relevant toxicities. The CR is lasting over 13 months and the patient is out of corticosteroid use.


To the best of our knowledge, this is the first case reporting interesting antitumor activity of T-DM1 and concomitant WBRT in both brain and leptomeningeal metastases, with a favorable safety profile and prolonged extracranial disease control. Further prospective studies should confirm these findings.
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