Phase II Evaluation of Continuous-Infusion 5-Fluorouracil, Leucovorin, Mitomycin-C, and Oral Dipyridamole in Advanced Measurable Pancreatic Cancer: A North Central Cancer Treatment Group Trial


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Abstract

At present there remains a need for more effective systemic therapy in advanced pancreatic cancer. Some studies have suggested that infusional chemotherapy schedules and biomodulation of 5-fluorouracil (5-FU) may improve the therapeutic outcome in advanced colon cancer. One such regimen that uses continuous infusion 5-FU, weekly leucovorin, daily dipyridamole, and intermittent mitomycin-C has activity in both colon and unresectable pancreatic carcinoma. The intent of this trial was to test the effectiveness of this four-drug regimen in advanced pancreatic cancer. Patients received 5-FU 200 mg/m2 daily by continuous infusion, leucovorin 30 mg/m2 IV weekly, mitomycin-C 10 mg/m2 day 1, and dipyridamole 75 mg orally four times daily for 5 weeks. After a 1-week break, treatment cycles were repeated every 6 weeks. Eligibility included biopsy-proven advanced measurable pancreatic cancer, Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group performance status 0 and 2, and no prior systemic chemotherapy. Of 46 evaluable patients, 9 partial responses and 1 complete tumor response were seen, for an overall response rate of 22% (95% confidence interval 11–36%). The median survival in the group of 50 patients registered to this trial was 4.6 months, with a range of 0.33 to 40.2 months. Toxicity was manageable, with the most common toxicities (≥grade III National Cancer Institute Common Toxicity Criteria) being anorexia (13%), stomatitis (17%), and hand–foot syndrome (13%). Of note, little severe hematologic toxicity and no significant headaches were reported. Although some patients did respond, the therapeutic results are not encouraging enough to take this regimen to phase III testing.

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