USPSTF2013 versus PLCOm2012 lung cancer screening eligibility criteria (International Lung Screening Trial): interim analysis of a prospective cohort study

Martin C. Tammemägi, Mamta Ruparel, Alain Tremblay, Renelle Myers, John Mayo, John Yee, Sukhinder Atkar-Khattra, Ren Yuan, Sonya Cressman, John English, Eric Bedard, Paul MacEachern, Paul Burrowes, Samantha L. Quaife, Henry Marshall, Ian Yang, Rayleen Bowman, Linda Passmore, Annette McWilliams, Fraser BrimsKuan Pin Lim, Lin Mo, Stephen Melsom, Bann Saffar, Mark Teh, Ramon Sheehan, Yijin Kuok, Renee Manser, Louis Irving, Daniel Steinfort, Mark McCusker, Diane Pascoe, Paul Fogarty, Emily Stone, David C.L. Lam, Ming Yen Ng, Varut Vardhanabhuti, Christine D. Berg, Rayjean J. Hung, Samuel M. Janes, Kwun Fong, Stephen Lam

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73 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Lung cancer is a major health problem. CT lung screening can reduce lung cancer mortality through early diagnosis by at least 20%. Screening high-risk individuals is most effective. Retrospective analyses suggest that identifying individuals for screening by accurate prediction models is more efficient than using categorical age-smoking criteria, such as the US Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) criteria. This study prospectively compared the effectiveness of the USPSTF2013 and PLCOm2012 model eligibility criteria. Methods: In this prospective cohort study, participants from the International Lung Screening Trial (ILST), aged 55–80 years, who were current or former smokers (ie, had ≥30 pack-years smoking history or ≤15 quit-years since last permanently quitting), and who met USPSTF2013 criteria or a PLCOm2012 risk threshold of at least 1·51% within 6 years of screening, were recruited from nine screening sites in Canada, Australia, Hong Kong, and the UK. After enrolment, patients were assessed with the USPSTF2013 criteria and the PLCOm2012 risk model with a threshold of at least 1·70% at 6 years. Data were collected locally and centralised. Main outcomes were the comparison of lung cancer detection rates and cumulative life expectancies in patients with lung cancer between USPSTF2013 criteria and the PLCOm2012 model. In this Article, we present data from an interim analysis. To estimate the incidence of lung cancers in individuals who were USPSTF2013-negative and had PLCOm2012 of less than 1·51% at 6 years, ever-smokers in the Prostate Lung Colorectal and Ovarian Cancer Screening Trial (PLCO) who met these criteria and their lung cancer incidence were applied to the ILST sample size for the mean follow-up occurring in the ILST. This trial is registered at, NCT02871856. Study enrolment is almost complete. Findings: Between June 17, 2015, and Dec 29, 2020, 5819 participants from the International Lung Screening Trial (ILST) were enrolled on the basis of meeting USPSTF2013 criteria or the PLCOm2012 risk threshold of at least 1·51% at 6 years. The same number of individuals was selected for the PLCOm2012 model as for the USPSTF2013 criteria (4540 [78%] of 5819). After a mean follow-up of 2·3 years (SD 1·0), 135 lung cancers occurred in 4540 USPSTF2013-positive participants and 162 in 4540 participants included in the PLCOm2012 of at least 1·70% at 6 years group (cancer sensitivity difference 15·8%, 95% CI 10·7–22·1%; absolute odds ratio 4·00, 95% CI 1·89–9·44; p<0·0001). Compared to USPSTF2013-positive individuals, PLCOm2012-selected participants were older (mean age 65·7 years [SD 5·9] vs 63·3 years [5·7]; p<0·0001), had more comorbidities (median 2 [IQR 1–3] vs 1 [1–2]; p<0·0001), and shorter life expectancy (13·9 years [95% CI 12·8–14·9] vs 14·8 [13·6–16·0] years). Model-based difference in cumulative life expectancies for those diagnosed with lung cancer were higher in those who had PLCOm2012 risk of at least 1·70% at 6 years than individuals who were USPSTF2013-positive (2248·6 years [95% CI 2089·6–2425·9] vs 2000·7 years [1841·2–2160·3]; difference 247·9 years, p=0·015). Interpretation: PLCOm2012 appears to be more efficient than the USPSTF2013 criteria for selecting individuals to enrol into lung cancer screening programmes and should be used for identifying high-risk individuals who benefit from the inclusion in these programmes. Funding: Terry Fox Research Institute, The UBC-VGH Hospital Foundation and the BC Cancer Foundation, the Alberta Cancer Foundation, the Australian National Health and Medical Research Council, Cancer Research UK and a consortium of funders, and the Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation for the UK Lung Screen Uptake Trial.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)138-148
Number of pages11
JournalThe Lancet Oncology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2022
Externally publishedYes


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