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Gemcitabine and docetaxel as first-line treatment for advanced urothelial carcinoma: a phase II study

By A Ardavanis, D Tryfonopoulos, A Alexopoulos, C Kandylis, G Lainakis and G Rigatos


The purpose of the study was to investigate the toxicity and efficacy of the combination of gemcitabine and docetaxel in untreated advanced urothelial carcinoma. Patients with previously untreated, locally advanced/recurrent or metastatic urothelial carcinoma stage-IV disease were eligible. Patients with Performance status: PS ECOG >3 or age >75 years or creatinine clearance <50 ml min−1 were excluded. Study treatment consisted of docetaxel 75 mg m−2 (day 8) and gemcitabine 1000 mg m−2 (days 1+8), every 21 days for a total of six to nine cycles. A total of 31 patients with urothelial bladder cancer, 25 men and six women, aged 42–74 (median 64) years were enrolled. The majority of patients had a good PS (51.6%; PS 0). In all, 15 (48.3%) patients had locally advanced or recurrent disease only and 16 (54.8%) presented with distant metastatic spread, with multiple site involvement in 22.5%. Toxicity was primarily haematologic, and the most frequent grade 3–4 toxicities were anaemia 11 (6.7%) thrombocytopenia eight (4.9%), and neutropenia 45 (27.6%), with 10 (6.1%) episodes of febrile neutropenia. No toxic deaths occurred. A number of patients had some cardiovascular morbidity (38.7%). Nonhaematological toxicities except alopecia (29 patients) were mild. Overall response rate was 51.6%, including four complete responses (12.9%) and 12 partial responses (38.7%), while a further five patients had disease stabilisation (s.d. 16.1%). The median time to progression was 8 months (95% CI 5.1–9.2 months) and the median overall survival was 15 months (95% CI 11.2–18.5 months), with 1-year survival rate of 60%. In conclusion, this schedule of gemcitabine and docetaxel is very active and well tolerated as a first-line treatment for advanced/relapsing or metastatic urothelial carcinoma. Although its relative efficacy and tolerance as compared to classic MVAC should be assessed in a phase III setting, the favourable toxicity profile of this regimen may offer an interesting alternative, particularly in patients with compromised renal function or cardiovascular disease

Topics: Clinical Studies
Publisher: Nature Publishing Group
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Provided by: PubMed Central

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