Survival:10.3 months
Toxicity Grade:5
Hospital:Cardarelli Hospital
Patients: This study involved 109 patients with malignant peritoneal mesothelioma. The median age was 59.8, ranging from 24 to 79 years of age. The majority (66.1%) were men. About half had received chemotherapy before starting this study.

Treatment: Patients were treated with the chemotherapy drug pemetrexed alone or pemetrexed plus carboplatin or cisplatin.

Toxicity: Seven patients died while on the study, but the deaths were not related to the study drugs. Grade 3 or 4 neutropenia was reported in 34.6% of patients as a whole, and was similar between groups. Grade 3 or 4 anemia was more common in patients receiving pemetrexed and carboplatin than the other groups (reported in 21.9% of patients).

Results: The median overall survival was 10.3 months for patients receiving pemetrexed alone. While the median overall survival couldn’t be calculated for the other groups when this study was published, there was no evidence that the survival time was different than that reported for pemetrexed alone.

Support: This study was supported by research funds from Eli Lilly, which markets pemetrexed as Alimta®.

Correspondence: Dr. Giacomo Carteni