Survival:10.1 months
Toxicity Grade:4
Country:United States
City/State/Province:Boston, MA
Hospital:Dana Farber Cancer Institute
Patients: This phase II study involved 108 patients with malignant pleural mesothelioma. The majority were men and had not received prior radiation therapy. These patients ranged in age from 36 to 88 years old.

Treatment: Patients were treated with the chemotherapy drugs gemcitabine and pemetrexed. There were two groups, or cohorts of patients. They received the same drugs, but cohort 1 received greater dose intensity than cohort 2.

Toxicity: Grade 3 or 4 neutropenia occurred in 42.9% of patients in cohort 1, and 52.9% of patients in the other cohort. Other grade 4 toxicities were dyspnea, fatigue, hyperglycemia, pneumonia, and pulmonary embolism. These toxicities occurred in less than 4% of patients.

Results: The median overall survival 8.08 months for cohort 1 and 10.12 months for cohort 2.

Support: This study was supported by research funds from Eli Lilly & Co., which develops/markets gemcitabine as Gemzar““ and pemetrexed as Alimta“.

Correspondence: Dr. Pasi A. Janne