Testing in a Prespecified Subgroup and the Intent-to-Treat Population.
In many settings, testing has been proposed to assess the effect of an experimental regimen within a biomarker-positive subgroup where it is biologically plausible that benefit is stronger in such patients, and in the overall population that also includes biomarker-negative subjects less likely to benefit from that regimen. A statistically favorable result in the biomarker-positive subgroup would lead to a claim for that subgroup, whereas a statistically favorable result for the overall population would lead to a claim that includes both biomarker subgroups. The latter setting is problematic when biomarker-negative patients truly do not benefit from the experimental regimen. When it is prespecified that biomarker-negative patients should not be included in the primary analysis of treatment effect in biomarker-positive patients because of the likelihood that treatment effects would differ between the 2 subgroups, it is logically inconsistent to include biomarker-positive patients in the primary analysis of treatment effect in biomarker-negative patients.