Capecitabine, a prodrug of 5-FU, has been reported to generate maximal tumour activity at tumour sites and/or to improve drug tolerability as compared with 5-FU infusion, and it has also been demonstrated to act synergistically with irinotecan against some solid cancers. A previous study concluded that dose-intensified biweekly capecitabine seems to be more effective at increasing both response rate and progression-free survival time than conventional dose and schedule of capecitabine in colon cancer. We conducted this study to ascertain the efficacy and toxicity of dose-intensified biweekly capecitabine and irinotecan combination chemotherapy in chemotherapy-naïve advanced or metastatic gastric cancer patients. Patients were treated with irinotecan 130 mg m-2 intravenously for 90 min on days 1 and 15. Capecitabine at 3500 mg m-2 day-1, divided into two sessions per day, was administered for seven consecutive days from days 1 and 15, and followed by a 7-day drug-free period, respectively. Fifty-five eligible patients were enrolled in this study from November 2003 to April 2006. There were 22 women and 33 men: median patient age was 54 years (range: 27-81). A total of 200 treatment cycles were administered at a median number of four per patient (range: 1-9). Intent-to-treatment analysis showed that one patient achieved complete response (1.8%), 23 partial response (41.8%), 15 stable disease (27.3%), 10 progressive disease (18.2%) and 6 were non-evaluable (10.9%). The overall response rate was 43.6% (95% confidence interval: 30.2-56.9). The common grade 3-4 toxicities were neutropenia in 12 (21.8%), nausea/vomiting in 3 (5.4%) and diarrhea in 4 (7.2%) patients. Median time to progression was 5 months (range: 0.5-11 months), median survival duration was 11 months (range: 0.5-45 months) and median response duration was 6 months (range: 0.5-9 months). Biweekly dose-intensified capecitabine and irinotecan combination chemotherapy was active for the treatment of advanced or metastatic gastric cancers with a tolerable safety profile.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This study was supported in part by a grant from the Korea Health 21 R&D Project, Ministry of Health & Welfare, Republic of Korea (A040151 and A010250).
- Stomach neoplasms
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cancer Research