Given the uncertain benefit in efficacy of adding CDK 4/6 to first rather than second line
endocrine treatment, the aim of this project is to evaluate whether the sequence of an
aromatase inhibitor plus CDK 4/6 in first line followed by fulvestrant in second line is
superior to the sequence of an aromatase inhibitor in first line followed by fulvestrant plus
CDK4/6 in second line.
Combining cyclin-dependent kinases 4 and 6 (CDK 4/6) inhibitors with endocrine therapies in
hormone receptor (HR)-positive, human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2)-negative
advanced breast cancer has shown to result in substantial improvements in progression-free
survival. There is however no evidence that this combination strategy leads to an improved
overall survival. Furthermore, no specific subgroups that will or will not benefit from the
combination of drugs have been identified yet. This means the optimal strategy for deploying
CDK 4/6 inhibitors in clinical practice is not yet known. Since CDK 4/6 inhibitors are costly
and can have toxic effects, it is important to determine the optimal treatment strategy to
avoid both over- and undertreatment.
The SONIA-trial is an investigator-initiated, multicenter, randomized phase III study. The
primary objective of this study is to evaluate if treatment with a non-steroidal aromatase
inhibitor combined with CDK 4/6 inhibition in first line followed at progression by
fulvestrant in second line (strategy A) improves progression-free survival compared to
treatment with a non-steroidal aromatase inhibitor in first line followed at progression by
fulvestrant combined with CDK4/6 inhibition in second line (strategy B). The primary end
point is progression-free survival after two lines (PFS2), secondary end points include
overall survival, quality of life, safety and biomarker analyses.
1. Adult women (≥ 18 years of age) with proven diagnosis of adenocarcinoma of the breast
with evidence of loco-regional recurrent or metastatic disease not amenable to
resection or radiation therapy with curative intent and for whom chemotherapy is not
2. Documentation of histologically or cytologically confirmed diagnosis of
estrogen-receptor (ER) expression >10% and/or progesterone receptor (PR) expression
>10% breast cancer based on local laboratory results.
3. Previously untreated with any systemic anti-cancer therapy for loco-regional recurrent
or metastatic HR+ disease, with the exception of recently started (within 28 days of
randomization) endocrine therapy.
4. Women who are not post-menopausal must use LHRH agonist. Postmenopausal status is
1. prior bilateral surgical oophorectomy, or
2. spontaneous cessation of regular menses for at least 12 consecutive months
3. in case of doubt serum estradiol <20 umol/l and follicle stimulating hormone
(FSH) levels >15 IU/L at screening
5. Measurable or evaluable disease as defined per RECIST v.1.1 (see Appendix 3) or
bone-only disease. Tumor lesions previously irradiated or subjected to other
locoregional therapy will only be deemed measurable if disease progression at the
treated site after completion of therapy is clearly documented.
6. Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group (ECOG) performance status (PS) 0-2.
7. Adequate organ and marrow function defined as follows:
1. ANC ≥1,000/mm3 (1.0 x 10e9 /L);
2. Platelets ≥50,000/mm3 (50 x 10e9 /L);
3. Estimated creatinine clearance ≥ 30 mL/min as calculated using the method
standard for the institution;
4. Total serum bilirubin ≤1.5 x ULN (≤3.0 x ULN if Gilbert's disease);
5. AST and ALT ≤3 x ULN (≤5.0 x ULN if liver metastases present);
8. Resolution of all acute toxic effects of prior anti-cancer therapy or surgical
procedures to NCI CTCAE version 4.0 Grade ≤1, except alopecia or other toxicities not
considered a safety risk for the patient at investigator's discretion.
9. Willingness and ability to comply with scheduled visits, treatment plan, laboratory
tests, and other study procedures.
10. Evidence of a personally signed and dated informed consent document indicating that
the patient (or a legal representative) has been informed of all pertinent aspects of
the study before any study-specific activity is performed.
1. Patients with advanced, symptomatic, visceral spread, who are at risk of
life-threatening complications in the short term (including patients with massive
uncontrolled effusions (pleural, pericardial, peritoneal), pulmonary lymphangitis, and
over 50% liver involvement).
2. Known active uncontrolled or symptomatic CNS metastases, carcinomatous meningitis, or
leptomeningeal disease as indicated by clinical symptoms, cerebral edema, and/or
progressive growth. Patients with a history of CNS metastases or cord compression are
eligible if they have been definitively treated with local therapy (e.g.,
radiotherapy, stereotactic surgery) and are clinically stable without the use of
steroids for at least 4 weeks before randomization
3. Prior neoadjuvant or adjuvant treatment with an aromatase inhibitor (i.e.,
anastrozole, letrozole or exemestane) with disease recurrence while on or within 12
months of treatment.
4. Prior treatment with any CDK4/6 inhibitor.
5. Patients treated within the last 7 days prior to randomization with:
1. Food or drugs that are known to be CYP3A4 inhibitors (ie, amprenavir, atazanavir,
boceprevir, clarithromycin, conivaptan, delavirdine, diltiazem, erythromycin,
fosamprenavir, indinavir, itraconazole, ketoconazole, lopinavir, mibefradil,
miconazole, nefazodone, nelfinavir, posaconazole, ritonavir, saquinavir,
telaprevir, telithromycin, verapamil, voriconazole, and grapefruit or grapefruit
2. Drugs that are known to be CYP3A4 inducers (ie, carbamazepine, felbamate,
nevirapine, phenobarbital, phenytoin, primidone, rifabutin, rifampin, rifapentin,
and St. John's wort).
6. Major surgery, chemotherapy, radiotherapy, any investigational agents, or other
anti-cancer therapy within 2 weeks before randomization. Patients who received prior
radiotherapy to ≥25% of bone marrow are not eligible independent of when it was
7. Diagnosis of any other malignancy prior to randomization, except those that are not
believed to influence the patient's prognosis and do not require any further
treatment. This includes, but is not limited to adequately treated basal cell or
squamous cell skin cancer and carcinoma in situ of the cervix.
8. QTc >480 msec at baseline
9. Active inflammatory bowel disease or chronic diarrhea, short bowel syndrome, or any
upper gastrointestinal surgery including gastric resection.
10. Known hypersensitivity to letrozole or anastrozole, or any of its excipients, or to
any palbociclib excipients.
11. Other severe acute or chronic medical or psychiatric condition or laboratory
abnormality that may increase the risk associated with study participation or
investigational product administration or may interfere with the interpretation of
study results and, in the judgment of the investigator, would make the patient
inappropriate for entry into this study.
12. Recent or active suicidal ideation or behavior.