Pharmacokinetics of trastuzumab emtansine (T-DM1) as a single agent or in combination with pertuzumab in HER2-positive breast cancer patients with recurrent or locally advanced metastatic breast cancer

  • Dan LuEmail author
  • Chunze Li
  • Matthew Riggs
  • Daniel Polhamus
  • Jonathan French
  • Priya Agarwal
  • Shang-Chiung Chen
  • Shweta Vadhavkar
  • Monika Patre
  • Alexander Strasak
  • Angelica Quartino
  • Jin Yan Jin
  • Sandhya Girish
Original Article



The phase III MARIANNE study investigated single-agent trastuzumab emtansine (T-DM1) and combination T-DM1 plus pertuzumab as the first-line treatment for human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2)-positive metastatic breast cancer (MBC). Pharmacokinetic properties of T-DM1 and pertuzumab in these patients and the potential for drug–drug interactions (DDIs) were assessed.


Pharmacokinetic samples of T-DM1-related analytes (T-DM1 conjugate, total trastuzumab, DM1) and pertuzumab were analyzed. Observed pharmacokinetic data were summarized for all analytes. Historical population pharmacokinetic models for T-DM1 conjugate and pertuzumab in HER2-positive MBC were used to derive empirical Bayes estimates of pharmacokinetic parameters.


In MARIANNE (N = 375), mean ± standard deviation population pharmacokinetic model-predicted Cycle 1 Cmax for T-DM1 conjugate was 74.4 ± 10.1 µg/mL, Cycle 1 Ctrough was 1.34 ± 0.802 µg/mL, and area under the concentration–time curve from time zero to infinity after first dose (AUCinf) was 338 ± 69.5 µg*day/mL. These values were similar to other T-DM1 studies. Pharmacokinetics of T-DM1 conjugate and other analytes (total trastuzumab, DM1) were similar with or without pertuzumab. In the pertuzumab plus T-DM1 arm, mean model-predicted Cycle 1 pertuzumab Cmax, Ctrough, and AUCinf were 276 ± 50.0 µg/mL, 64.8 ± 17.9 μg/mL, and 4470 ± 1360 µg*day/mL, respectively. These values were similar to other pertuzumab studies.


Based on the population pharmacokinetic analysis of T-DM1 conjugate and pertuzumab, pharmacokinetics are similar across different lines of treatment and stages of disease including previously untreated MBC patients, and no DDIs were identified for combined use of T-DM1 and pertuzumab.


Trastuzumab emtansine (T-DM1) HER2 Pharmacokinetics Previously untreated metastatic breast cancer MARIANNE 



The authors acknowledge the investigators, patients, and their families who participated in these clinical trials. The authors are grateful for the assistance of Jia Kang, PhD, from Metrum Research Group, for her assistance in reviewing the data presented in this manuscript.


This study was funded by Genentech, Inc. Support for third-party writing assistance for this manuscript was provided by Genentech, Inc.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

DL, CL, PA, S-CC, AQ, JYJ, and SG are employees of Genentech and own stock in F. Hoffmann-La Roche; MP and AS are employees of and own stock in F. Hoffmann-La Roche; MR, DP, and JF are salaried employees of Metrum Research Group, which was contracted by Genentech, Inc.

Ethical approval

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

Informed consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.

Supplementary material

280_2019_3852_MOESM1_ESM.docx (1 mb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 1062 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Dan Lu
    • 1
    Email author
  • Chunze Li
    • 1
  • Matthew Riggs
    • 2
  • Daniel Polhamus
    • 2
  • Jonathan French
    • 2
  • Priya Agarwal
    • 1
  • Shang-Chiung Chen
    • 1
  • Shweta Vadhavkar
    • 1
  • Monika Patre
    • 3
  • Alexander Strasak
    • 3
  • Angelica Quartino
    • 1
  • Jin Yan Jin
    • 1
  • Sandhya Girish
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Clinical PharmacologyGenentech, Inc.South San FranciscoUSA
  2. 2.Metrum Research GroupTariffvilleUSA
  3. 3.F. Hoffmann-La Roche Ltd.BaselSwitzerland

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