The type of chemotherapy regimen used within a chemoradiation regimen for the treatment of patients with stage 3 non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) does not influence who will develop brain metastases within the first year after diagnosis, a study presented at the European Lung Cancer Conference (ELCC) 2016 has shown.1

Although brain metastases frequently occur within 1 year after chemoradiotherapy for stage 3 NSCLC, it is unclear whether the specific chemotherapy regimen impacts subsequent brain metastases development.

For the multicenter, retrospective study, researchers analyzed data from 838 patients with stage 3 NSCLC who completed chemoradiotherapy. Of those, 737 received concurrent chemoradiation and 101 received sequential therapy.

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Results showed that 11% of patients developed brain metastases within 1 year, with 5% having brain metastases as their only site of first relapse. Researchers found that patients with brain metastases were more likely to be younger (P < .001), female (P = .009), and have adenocarcinoma histology (P < .001).

The study demonstrated no association between the type of chemotherapy used, and brain metastases development within 1 year of treatment (OR, 0.87; P = .695) nor as the only site of first relapse (OR, 0.89; P = .838). Comparable results were observed for low dose cisplatin monotherapy vs high dose non-taxane and high-dose taxane regimens, cisplatin/etoposide, cisplatin/vinorelbine, and weekly cisplatin/docetaxel.

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Further, whether chemotherapy was administered concurrently or sequentially to radiation had no impact on brain metastases development.


  1. Hendriks L, Brouns A, Amini M, et al. Brain metastases (BM) development after chemoradiation (CRT) for stage III non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC): does the type of chemotherapy matter? Poster presentation at: European Lung Cancer Conference 2016; April 13-16, 2016; Geneva, Switzerland.