According to a new study published in the European Journal of Cancer, researchers have found that a sequential approach of alternating irinotecan, leucovorin, fluorouracil, and gemcitabine may be a safe and effective strategy for the treatment of patients with metastatic pancreatic adenocarcinoma.
For the phase 2 study, researchers sought to investigate fixed-dose rate gemcitabine alone or alternating with irinotecan, leucovorin, and fluorouracil as first-line treatment for patients with metastatic pancreatic cancer. Researchers enrolled 98 patients between October 2007 and March 2011.
Participants were randomly assigned 1:1 to receive fixed-dose rate gemcitabine alone or irinotecan, leucovorin, and fluorouracil alternating with fixed-dose rate gemcitabine as 2-month periods. All patients had a World Health Organization performance status of 0 or 1 and bilirubin levels <1.5 the upper limit of normal.
At 6 months, researchers observed a progression-free survival rate of 43.5% (95% CI, 28.6 - 58.4) in the alternating regimen group and 26.1% (95% CI, 12.9 - 39.3) in the gemcitabine alone group. The findings suggest that this alternating strategy may be a safe and effective approach to first-line treatment of patients with metastatic pancreatic adenocarcinoma.
This study aims to find out whether a sequential approach alternating irinotecan, fluorouracil and gemcitabine may be effective and tolerable in patients with metastatic pancreatic cancer.