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Medline ® Abstract for Reference 55

of 'Systemic chemotherapy for metastatic colorectal cancer: Completed clinical trials'

Phase III study of weekly high-dose infusional fluorouracil plus folinic acid with or without irinotecan in patients with metastatic colorectal cancer: European Organisation for Research and Treatment of Cancer Gastrointestinal Group Study 40986.
Köhne CH, van Cutsem E, Wils J, Bokemeyer C, El-Serafi M, Lutz MP, Lorenz M, Reichardt P, Rückle-Lanz H, Frickhofen N, Fuchs R, Mergenthaler HG, Langenbuch T, Vanhoefer U, Rougier P, Voigtmann R, Müller L, Genicot B, Anak O, Nordlinger B, European Organisation for Research and Treatment of Cancer Gastrointestinal Group
J Clin Oncol. 2005;23(22):4856. Epub 2005 Jun 6.
PURPOSE: To demonstrate that adding irinotecan to a standard weekly schedule of high-dose, infusional fluorouracil (FU) and leucovorin (folinic acid [FA]) can prolong progression-free survival (PFS).
PATIENTS AND METHODS: Four hundred thirty patients with measurable or assessable metastatic colorectal cancer were randomly assigned to receive either FA 500 mg/m(2) as a 2-hour infusion and FU 2.6 g/m(2) by intravenous 24-hour infusion, both administered weekly for 6 weeks, followed by a 2-week rest (Arbeitsgemeinschaft für Internistische Onkologie [AIO]arm, n = 216), or a similar schedule but with FU 2.3 or 2.0 g/m(2) preceded by irinotecan 80 mg/m(2) administered over 30 minutes (experimental group, n = 214).
RESULTS: The median PFS time in the experimental group was 8.5 months (95% CI, 7.6 to 9.9 months) compared with 6.4 months (95% CI, 5.3 to 7.2 months) in the AIO arm (P<.0001). The median overall survival time was increased from 16.9 to 20.1 months (P = .2779). The objective response rate was 62.2% (95% CI, 55.0% to 69.5%) in the experimental group and 34.4% (95% CI, 27.5% to 41.3%) in the AIO arm (P<.0001).
CONCLUSION: The addition of irinotecan to the standard AIO FU/FA regimen was associated with a highly significant improvement in PFS and response rate and was well tolerated. The results of this study confirm that irinotecan in combination with high-dose infusional FU/FA is a reference first-line treatment.
Department of Internal Medicine, University of Dresden, Dresden. onkologie@klinikum-oldenburg.de