Prognosis of polymerase epsilon (POLE) mutation in high-grade endometrioid endometrial cancer: Systematic review and meta-analysis

Joao Casanova, Gonçalo Silva Duarte, Ana Gomes da Costa, Ana Catarino, Mónica Nave, Telma Antunes, Sofia Silvério Serra, Sara Simões Dias, Nadeem Abu-Rustum, Jorge Lima

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Background: POLE mutated endometrial carcinomas may represent a subspecific type of tumors harboring a more favorable prognosis. Grade 3 (G3 or high-grade) endometrioid endometrial carcinomas remain a clinical dilemma, with some tumors behaving as the low-grade counterparts and others presenting a more aggressive behavior. Objectives: To determine the association between POLE mutational status and the overall-survival (OS) and progression-free-survival (PFS) of patients with G3 endometrioid endometrial cancer (EC). We also aimed to determine the prevalence of POLE mutations in G3 endometrioid EC. Methods: We conducted a systematic review in accordance with the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) guidelines (PROSPERO No: CRD4202340008). We searched the following electronic databases: PubMed/Medline, EMBASE, Cochrane Library, Scopus, and Web of Science. For time-to-event data, the effect of POLE mutation in G3 EC was described using hazard ratios (HRs) and corresponding 95% confidence intervals (CIs). Individual patient data for each study was investigated if available from the study authors. If individual patient data were not available, information regarding time-to-event outcomes was extracted using an appropriate methodology. OS and PFS were analyzed using both one-stage and two-stage approaches, the Kaplan-Meier method, and Cox-proportional hazards models. Results: This systematic review and meta-analysis included 19 studies with 3092 patients who had high-grade endometrioid EC. Patients with POLE mutations had lower risks of death (HR = 0.36, 95% CI 0.26 to 0.50, I2 = 0%, 10 trials) and disease progression (HR = 0.31, 95% CI 0.17 to 0.57, I2 = 33%, 10 trials). The pooled prevalence of POLE mutation was 11% (95% CI 9 to 13, I2 = 68%, 18 studies). Conclusion: POLE mutations in high-grade endometrioid EC are associated with a more favorable prognosis with increased OS and PFS.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)99-107
Number of pages9
JournalGynecologic Oncology
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2024


  • Endometrial cancer
  • Endometrioid
  • High-grade
  • Meta-analysis
  • POLE
  • Prognosis
  • Systematic review


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