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Web Resources: Pemetrexed
Latest Research Publications

Web Resources: Pemetrexed (6 links)

Latest Research Publications

Fiala O, Pesek M, Skrickova J, et al.
Thyroid transcription factor 1 expression is associated with outcome of patients with non-squamous non-small cell lung cancer treated with pemetrexed-based chemotherapy.
Tumour Biol. 2017; 39(2):1010428317691186 [PubMed] Related Publications
Pemetrexed is an antifolate cytostatic agent targeting several folate-dependent enzymatic pathways, widely used in the treatment of locally advanced or metastatic stage non-small cell lung cancer. Aside from the non-squamous histology, there is still no available molecular biomarker predicting treatment efficacy of pemetrexed-based chemotherapy. The aim of our retrospective study was to evaluate the association of thyroid transcription factor 1 expression with outcome of a large cohort of patients with non-squamous non-small cell lung cancer treated with pemetrexed. We retrospectively analysed clinical data of 463 patients with advanced-stage non-small cell lung cancer (IIIB or IV) treated with pemetrexed-based chemotherapy. Thyroid transcription factor 1 expression was assessed using indirect immunohistochemical detection in formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded tumour tissue at the time of diagnosis. Thyroid transcription factor 1 expression was detected in the tumour tissue from 76.0% of patients, and tumours from 24.0% of patients were thyroid transcription factor 1 negative. The median progression-free survival and overall survival for patients with thyroid transcription factor 1 positive tumours were 4.8 and 11.8 months compared to 2.8 and 8.3 months for those with thyroid transcription factor 1 negative tumours (p = 0.001 and p < 0.001). The multivariable Cox proportional hazards model revealed that thyroid transcription factor 1 expression was significantly associated with progression-free survival (hazard ratio = 1.57, p < 0.001) and also with overall survival (hazard ratio = 1.73, p < 0.001). In conclusion, the results of the conducted retrospective study suggest that the thyroid transcription factor 1 expression was independently associated with progression-free survival and overall survival in patients with advanced-stage non-squamous non-small cell lung cancer treated with pemetrexed-based chemotherapy.

Ishikura N, Yanagisawa M, Noguchi-Sasaki M, et al.
Importance of Bevacizumab Maintenance Following Combination Chemotherapy in Human Non-small Cell Lung Cancer Xenograft Models.
Anticancer Res. 2017; 37(2):623-629 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Bevacizumab in combination with chemotherapeutics has shown significant survival benefit in clinical studies in patients with non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). Since bevacizumab was administered as standard treatment until disease progression, the importance of bevacizumab during the maintenance phase was not prospectively investigated in these studies.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: Three human NSCLC cell line xenograft models were used to investigate antitumor effect of bevacizumab and tumor microvessel density (MVD) was analyzed.
RESULTS: In A549 and NCI-H292 models, bevacizumab maintenance following combination with paclitaxel exhibited stronger tumor suppression than its absence. In an NCI-H292 model, bevacizumab maintenance continuously inhibited increase of MVD. In an NCI-H2228 model following induction treatment with pemetrexed and bevacizumab, maintenance with pemetrexed plus bevacizumab, had stronger efficacy than pemetrexed alone and led to lower MVD and level of thymidylate synthase.
CONCLUSION: Continuous suppression of angiogenesis by bevacizumab may contribute to the superior efficacy of maintenance treatment containing bevacizumab.

Petrella F, Coccè V, Masia C, et al.
Paclitaxel-releasing mesenchymal stromal cells inhibit in vitro proliferation of human mesothelioma cells.
Biomed Pharmacother. 2017; 87:755-758 [PubMed] Related Publications
INTRODUCTION: Malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) is a rare fatal asbestos-related malignancy originating in the mesothelial cells of the pleura. A platinum-based doublet containing a third-generation antifolate is the front-line standard of care whilst there are no approved second-line treatments for MPM which remains a disease setting to test the efficacy of new therapeutic agents.
METHODS: Bone marrow mesenchymal stromal cells (BM-MSCs) were loaded with pemetrexed (PMX) and paclitaxel (PTX) according to a standardized procedure. Drug release by both PMX- and PTX-primed BM-MSCs (BM-MSCs/PMX and BM-MSCs/PTX) was tested on the in vitro proliferation of a panel of tumor cell lines including NCI-H28 mesothelioma.
RESULTS: The in vitro anticancer activity of pure PTX was significantly higher than that of PMX against all the cell lines tested (14.7 times higher than that of PMX against NCI-H28). Whereas BM-MSCs did not take up and release PMX in amounts effective on mesothelioma, PTX-loaded BM-MSCs dramatically inhibited mesothelioma proliferation.
CONCLUSIONS: PTX-primed mesenchymal stromal cells successfully inhibit the in vitro proliferation of human mesothelioma cells. Further studies and in vivo testing are required to confirm our preliminary in vitro results as a potential new mesothelioma therapy based on cell drug delivery.

Rossi A, Sacco PC, Santabarbara G, et al.
Developments in pharmacotherapy for treating metastatic non-small cell lung cancer.
Expert Opin Pharmacother. 2017; 18(2):151-163 [PubMed] Related Publications
INTRODUCTION: Most patients with non-small cell lung (NSCLC), including squamous cell carcinoma, adenocarcinoma and large cell carcinoma, have advanced disease at diagnosis and systemic therapy is the standard-of-care. About 20% of Caucasian patients are affected by an oncogene-addicted advanced NSCLC for which correspondent inhibitors are available. Areas covered: The main state-of-the-art synthetic anticancer drugs in the groups of chemotherapeutics, epidermal growth factor receptor and anaplastic lymphoma kinase tyrosine kinase inhibitors for NSCLC treatment, are reviewed and discussed from phase III randomized practice-changing trials onwards. A structured search of bibliographic databases for peer-reviewed research literature and of main meetings using a focused review question was undertaken. Expert opinion: The survival of NSCLC patients is increasing, regardless of the presence or not of a specific target, due to the availability of new generation drugs. The continuous deep knowledge of the mechanisms of NSCLC development and the constant research into new drugs should lead to the discovery of new potential targets and the synthesis of corresponding inhibitors to improve the outcomes of each subgroup of patients in order to control the disease in a constantly growing percentage of patients.

Mok TS, Wu YL, Ahn MJ, et al.
Osimertinib or Platinum-Pemetrexed in EGFR T790M-Positive Lung Cancer.
N Engl J Med. 2017; 376(7):629-640 [PubMed] Related Publications
Background Osimertinib is an epidermal growth factor receptor tyrosine kinase inhibitor (EGFR-TKI) that is selective for both EGFR-TKI sensitizing and T790M resistance mutations in patients with non-small-cell lung cancer. The efficacy of osimertinib as compared with platinum-based therapy plus pemetrexed in such patients is unknown. Methods In this randomized, international, open-label, phase 3 trial, we assigned 419 patients with T790M-positive advanced non-small-cell lung cancer, who had disease progression after first-line EGFR-TKI therapy, in a 2:1 ratio to receive either oral osimertinib (at a dose of 80 mg once daily) or intravenous pemetrexed (500 mg per square meter of body-surface area) plus either carboplatin (target area under the curve, 5 [AUC5]) or cisplatin (75 mg per square meter) every 3 weeks for up to six cycles; maintenance pemetrexed was allowed. In all the patients, disease had progressed during receipt of first-line EGFR-TKI therapy. The primary end point was investigator-assessed progression-free survival. Results The median duration of progression-free survival was significantly longer with osimertinib than with platinum therapy plus pemetrexed (10.1 months vs. 4.4 months; hazard ratio; 0.30; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.23 to 0.41; P<0.001). The objective response rate was significantly better with osimertinib (71%; 95% CI, 65 to 76) than with platinum therapy plus pemetrexed (31%; 95% CI, 24 to 40) (odds ratio for objective response, 5.39; 95% CI, 3.47 to 8.48; P<0.001). Among 144 patients with metastases to the central nervous system (CNS), the median duration of progression-free survival was longer among patients receiving osimertinib than among those receiving platinum therapy plus pemetrexed (8.5 months vs. 4.2 months; hazard ratio, 0.32; 95% CI, 0.21 to 0.49). The proportion of patients with adverse events of grade 3 or higher was lower with osimertinib (23%) than with platinum therapy plus pemetrexed (47%). Conclusions Osimertinib had significantly greater efficacy than platinum therapy plus pemetrexed in patients with T790M-positive advanced non-small-cell lung cancer (including those with CNS metastases) in whom disease had progressed during first-line EGFR-TKI therapy. (Funded by AstraZeneca; AURA3 ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT02151981 .).

Yoshida T, Okamoto T, Yano T, et al.
Molecular Factors Associated with Pemetrexed Sensitivity According to Histological Type in Non-small Cell Lung Cancer.
Anticancer Res. 2016; 36(12):6319-6326 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: This study was designed to investigate potential molecules that predict chemosensitivity to pemetrexed (Alimta®) in surgically resected non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC).
MATERIALS AND METHODS: Chemosensitivity to ALM and other drugs was assessed by succinate dehydrogenase inhibition (SDI) test in 69 NSCLC samples (55 adenocarcinomas, and 14 squamous cell carcinomas). The mRNA expression levels of Alimta®-target enzymes [thymidylate synthase (TYMS); dihydrofolate reductase (DHFR) and glycinamide ribonucleotide formyltransferase (GARFT)], Alimta®-metabolizing enzymes [γ-glutamyl hydrase (GGH) and folylpolyglutamate synthase] and an Alimta® transporter [reduce folate carrier (RFC)] were measured and examined for potential correlations to chemosensitivity.
RESULTS: The squamous cell carcinoma samples showed higher TYMS expression and lower RFC expression than did the adenocarcinoma samples. In the adenocarcinoma sample analyses, GGH expression was inversely correlated to sensitivity.
CONCLUSION: The histology-dependent differences in chemosensitivity to Alimta® may be attributed to the histology-dependent differences in TYMS and RFC expression. In adenocarcinomas, GGH potentially represents a marker for chemosensitivity to Alimta®.

Branchi F, Tenca A, Bareggi C, et al.
A case of pseudoachalasia hiding a malignant pleural mesothelioma.
Tumori. 2016; 102(Suppl. 2) [PubMed] Related Publications
PURPOSE: Malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) is a rare cancer with a poor prognosis. We describe a case of MPM with an uncommon onset, characterized by pseudoachalasia as demonstrated with high-resolution manometry (HRM).
METHODS: A 56-year-old man was referred to our hospital reporting worsening dysphagia. On the hypothesis of an esophageal motor disorder, the patient was referred for an HRM examination, which revealed features consistent with a diagnosis of type II achalasia.
RESULTS: At the time of the first pneumatic dilation the endoscopist stopped the procedure in order to prevent perforation when he noticed only partial expansion of the pneumatic balloon. A CT scan and subsequent CT-guided excisional biopsy revealed an epithelioid pleural mesothelioma infiltrating the muscle wall. Given his good clinical condition, the patient was eligible for chemotherapy with cisplatin 75 mg/m2 and pemetrexed 500 mg/m2, resulting in a good response with partial remission of the disease and resolution of the dysphagia symptoms.
CONCLUSIONS: Pseudoachalasia as the first or only manifestation of mesothelioma is a rare occurrence that may expose patients to the risk of diagnostic delay. Close attention should be paid whenever a patient with symptoms and signs consistent with achalasia shows unusual features.

Hattinger CM, Tavanti E, Fanelli M, et al.
Pharmacogenomics of genes involved in antifolate drug response and toxicity in osteosarcoma.
Expert Opin Drug Metab Toxicol. 2017; 13(3):245-257 [PubMed] Related Publications
INTRODUCTION: Antifolates are structural analogs of folates, which have been used as antitumor drugs for more than 60 years. The antifolate drug most commonly used for treating human tumors is methotrexate (MTX), which is utilized widely in first-line treatment protocols of high-grade osteosarcoma (HGOS). In addition to MTX, two other antifolates, trimetrexate and pemetrexed, have been tested in clinical settings for second-line treatment of recurrent HGOS with patients unfortunately showing modest activity. Areas covered: There is clinical evidence which suggsest that, like other chemotherapeutic agents, not all HGOS patients are equally responsive to antifolates and do not have the same susceptibility to experience adverse drug-related toxicities. Here, we summarize the pharmacogenomic information reported so far for genes involved in antifolate metabolism and transport and in MTX-related toxicity in HGOS patients. Expert opinion: Identification and validation of genetic biomarkers that significantly impact clinical antifolate treatment response and related toxicity may provide the basis for a future treatment modulation based on the pharmacogenetic and pharmacogenomic features of HGOS patients.

Shi X, Gu HT, Lin SB, et al.
Abnormal expression of PTEN and PIK3CA in pemetrexed-resistant human pancreatic cancer cell line Patu8988.
Genet Mol Res. 2016; 15(3) [PubMed] Related Publications
The aim of this study was to investigate the expression of PTEN and PIK3CA in the pemetrexed-resistant human pancreatic cancer cell line Patu8988, and to evaluate their effects on the biological behavior of pancreatic cancer cells. PTEN and PIK3CA gene and protein expressions were detected by reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and western blot, respectively, in a pemetrexed-resistant pancreatic cancer cell line and in the parent strain of the pancreatic cancer cells. The discrepancies between the two types of cell lines were detected by a transwell test. RT-PCR and western blot analyses revealed that PTEN and PIK3CA were overexpressed in the pemetrexed-resistant pancreatic cancer cell line. PTEN and PIK3CA were shown to be upregulated by 89 and 76% (western blot), respectively, in the pemetrexed-resistant cell line, compared to the normal pancreatic cancer cell line. The migratory and invasive abilities of the pemetrexed-resistant pancreatic cancer cell were significantly reduced compared to those of the parent strain (P < 0.05; transwell assay). Both PTEN and PIK3CA expression was abnormally enhanced in the pemetrexed-resistant cell line Patu8988; the co-existence of high levels of PTEN and PIK3CA in the pemetrexed-resistant pancreatic cancer line cells induced a significant decrease in their migratory and invasive capacities. This suggested that the mechanism of pemetrexed resistant may be affected by PTEN and PIK3CA, and that these may alter the biological behavior of cancer cells.

He G, Xiao X, Zou M, et al.
Pemetrexed/cisplatin as first-line chemotherapy for advanced lung cancer with brain metastases: A case report and literature review.
Medicine (Baltimore). 2016; 95(32):e4401 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Brain metastases (BMs) are a common and serious complication of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). Whole-brain radiotherapy (WBRT), surgery, and molecular targeted therapy are usually used to treat NSCLC with BM. Chemotherapeutic options for BM are limited by tumor resistance, ineffective agents, and the blood-brain barrier. Pemetrexed/cisplatin is the preferred chemotherapy in nonsquamous NSCLC, but the efficacy of this treatment for nonsquamous NSCLC with BM is uncertain.
METHODS: We present a case of nonsquamous NSCLC with asymptomatic BM presenting with irritating cough and right shoulder back pain (unknown sensitizing epidermal growth factor receptor mutations or anaplastic lymphoma kinase).
RESULTS: He benefited from administration of first-line chemotherapy of pemetrexed/cisplatin. Partial remission was achieved in the primary lesion of the lungs and BM lesion. He was further given 3 cycles of pemetrexed monotherapy and WBRT. Complete remission was further achieved in BM lesion.
CONCLUSION: The findings of clinical trials and theoretical studies about the current pemetrexed/cisplatin in the treatment of nonsquamous NSCLC with BM are also summarized to provide a reference for the application of pemetrexed/cisplatin in nonsquamous NSCLC with BM. Whether or not pemetrexed/cisplatin is definitely effective in nonsquamous NSCLC with BM must be proven by subsequent phase III clinical trials.

Igawa S, Sato Y, Ishihara M, et al.
EGFR Mutation Genotype Impact on the Efficacy of Pemetrexed in Patients with Nonsquamous Nonsmall Cell Lung Cancer.
Asian Pac J Cancer Prev. 2016; 17(7):3249-53 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Pemetrexed monotherapy has come to be recognized as one of the standard secondline therapies for advanced nonsquamous nonsmall cell lung cancer (NSCLC). However, there have been no reports of studies that have evaluated the efficacy of pemetrexed according to type of active EGFR mutation, i.e., an exon 19 deletion or an L858R point mutation.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: The records of nonsquamous NSCLC patients harboring an EGFR mutation who received pemetrexed monotherapy as a second or later line of chemotherapy at Kitasato University Hospital between March 2010 and October 2015 were retrospectively reviewed, and the treatment outcomes were evaluated.
RESULTS: The overall response rate and progressionfree survival time (PFS) of the 53 patients with nonsquamous NSCLC were 15.1% and 2.3 months, respectively. There were significant differences between the disease control rate (37.5% vs. 76.2%) and PFS time (1.8 months vs. 3.3 months) of the exon 19 deletion group and the L858R point mutation group, and a multivariate analysis identified type of EGFR mutation as well as performance status (PS) as independent predictors of PFS.
CONCLUSIONS: The clinical data obtained in this study provided a valuable rationale for considering type of EGFR mutation as well as non squamous histology as predictors of the efficacy of pemetrexed monotherapy.

Kentepozidis N, Economopoulou P, Christofyllakis C, et al.
Salvage treatment with irinotecan/cisplatin versus pemetrexed/cisplatin in patients with non-small cell lung cancer pre-treated with a non-platinum-based regimen in the first-line setting: a randomized phase II study of the Hellenic Oncology Research Group (HORG).
Clin Transl Oncol. 2017; 19(3):317-325 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Platinum-based chemotherapy is the standard front-line treatment for patients with advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). However, non-platinum combinations of third-generation chemotherapeutic agents are considered an alternative therapeutic option for patients who cannot tolerate the toxic effects of platinum compounds. In this study, the efficacy and toxicity of the combination of irinotecan plus cisplatin (IC) was compared to pemetrexed plus cisplatin (PC) regimen, in platinum-naïve patients with advanced NSCLC, who had been previously treated with the combination of a taxane plus gemcitabine.
PATIENTS AND METHODS: A total of 124 patients with locally advanced or metastatic NSCLC were randomly assigned to either irinotecan 110 mg/m(2) on day 1 and 100 mg/m(2) on day 8 plus cisplatin 80 mg/m(2) on day 8 every 3 weeks (IC arm) or pemetrexed 500 mg/m(2) plus cisplatin 80 mg/m(2) on day 1 every 3 weeks (PC arm). The primary endpoint of the study was the overall response rate (ORR).
RESULTS: The ORR and median progression-free survival (PFS) in the IC arm were 18 % and 3.3 months, respectively, while in the PC arm were 19 % and 4.2 months (p = ns). Median overall survival (OS) was significantly higher in patients with PC (6.9 vs. 10.9; p = 0.013). PC regimen had a better toxicity profile compared to IC, with a statistically significant lower incidence of grade 3/4 neutropenia (3 vs. 31 %; p = 0.0001) and diarrhea (1.6 vs. 14.7 %, p = 0.018).
CONCLUSIONS: In patients with advanced NSCLC pretreated with docetaxel/gemcitabine, the combination of pemetrexed/cisplatin is associated with increased OS and is better tolerated than the combination of irinotecan/cisplatin and should be considered as a valid therapeutic option for platinum-naive, previously treated patients. CLINICALTRIALS.

Hu W, Fang J, Nie J, et al.
Efficacy and safety of extended use of platinum-based doublet chemotherapy plus endostatin in patients with advanced nonsmall cell lung cancer.
Medicine (Baltimore). 2016; 95(28):e4183 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
The aim of this study was to investigate the efficacy and safety of the extended use of platinum-based doublet chemotherapy (PT-DC) plus endostatin in patients with advanced nonsmall cell lung cancer (NSCLC).We performed a retrospective analysis of 200 newly diagnosed advanced NSCLC patients who had received at least 1 cycle of endostatin plus PT-DC between September 2009 and November 2014. Of these patients, 155 received 4 or more cycles of therapy (the extended therapy group), while 45 received less than 4 cycles of therapy (the control group). Clinical tumor responses, progression-free survival (PFS), overall survival (OS), and toxicity profiles were recorded and retrospectively analyzed.In the extended therapy group, 67 patients (43.2%) achieved a best overall response rate of partial response (PR), while in the control group, 13 patients (28.9%) had a best overall response rate of PR. After a median follow-up of 15.9 months, the median PFS and OS were 8.0 and 23.1 months in the extended arm and 5.8 and 14.0 months in the control arm, respectively. There were statistically significant differences in median PFS and OS between these 2 arms. Hematologic and gastrointestinal toxicities occurred more frequently in the extended therapy group, but no statistically significant difference was detected in grade 3 to 4 toxicities overall between these 2 groups.In conclusion, extended treatment using endostatin combined with PT-DC can provide additional survival benefits and satisfactory toxicity profiles in previously untreated patients with NSCLC, which merits further evaluation in a larger prospective study.

Tracey EH, Modi B, Micheletti RG
Pemetrexed-Induced Pseudocellulitis Reaction With Eosinophilic Infiltrate on Skin Biopsy.
Am J Dermatopathol. 2017; 39(1):e1-e2 [PubMed] Related Publications
Peripheral edema with painful erythema is an increasingly recognized but poorly understood cutaneous adverse reaction to the antifolate agent pemetrexed. It is frequently misdiagnosed as cellulitis, and when it occurs, it is often dose-limiting. The authors report the case of a patient with preexisting lower extremity edema who developed extensive painful, bilateral erythema 5 days after administration of pemetrexed. An eosinophil-rich dermal inflammatory infiltrate was noted histologically. The authors review previously reported cases of pemetrexed-induced pseudocellulitis and discuss possible pathophysiology.

Inui T, Amitani H, Kubo K, et al.
Case Report: A Non-small Cell Lung Cancer Patient Treated with GcMAF, Sonodynamic Therapy and Tumor Treating Fields.
Anticancer Res. 2016; 36(7):3767-70 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND/AIM: Macrophage activating factor (MAF)-based immunotherapy has a wide application for use in treating many diseases via macrophage activation. Sonodynamic therapy (SDT) using low-intensity ultrasound and tumor treating field (TTF) therapy are novel therapeutic modalities. SDT is usually combined with ozone therapy to improve local hypoxia within the tumor environment.
CASE REPORT: We treated a 77-year-old male diagnosed with non-small cell lung cancer ((NSCLC) stage 3B) using second-generation serum GcMAF and oral colostrum MAF-based immunotherapy combined with SDT, TTF and ozone therapies.
RESULTS: This case report demonstrates that GcMAF, oral colostrum MAF, SDT, TTF and ozone therapy can be used for NSCLC without adverse effects.
CONCLUSION: This case report suggests a new concept of cancer treatment using local destruction of cancer tissue, in this case conducted with SDT and TTF therapy, to be used in combination with serum GcMAF and colostrum MAF immunotherapy as a systemic treatment.

Wang L, Wu YL, Lu S, et al.
An East Asian subgroup analysis of PROCLAIM, a phase III trial of pemetrexed and cisplatin or etoposide and cisplatin plus thoracic radiation therapy followed by consolidation chemotherapy in locally advanced nonsquamous non-small cell lung cancer.
Asia Pac J Clin Oncol. 2016; 12(4):380-387 [PubMed] Related Publications
AIM: PROCLAIM, a phase III trial of patients with nonsquamous non-small cell lung cancer comparing concurrent pemetrexed-cisplatin and thoracic radiation therapy followed by consolidation pemetrexed, did not meet its primary endpoint of superior overall survival versus etoposide-cisplatin and thoracic radiation therapy followed by a consolidation platinum doublet of choice. The results from an East Asian subgroup analysis are presented here.
METHODS: A subgroup analysis was performed for all patients randomized from China (n = 61), Taiwan (n = 25), and Korea (n = 11).
RESULTS: Baseline characteristics were balanced between treatment arms for East Asian patients. In the 97 randomized East Asian patients, median overall survival was 26.8 months for the pemetrexed-cisplatin arm and 36.3 months for the etoposide-cisplatin arm (hazard ratio: 1.23; 95% confidence interval: 0.70-2.14; P = 0.469). Median progression-free survival was 10.0 months for the pemetrexed-cisplatin arm and 7.6 months for the etoposide-cisplatin arm (hazard ratio: 0.97; 95% confidence interval: 0.61-1.54; P = 0.890). The objective response rate was 47.7% in the pemetrexed-cisplatin arm and 34.0% in the etoposide-cisplatin arm (P = 0.167). In the 90 treated East Asian patients, the overall incidence of drug-related grade 3-4 treatment-emergent adverse events was significantly lower in the pemetrexed-cisplatin arm versus the etoposide-cisplatin arm (61.4% vs 91.3%; P = 0.001).
CONCLUSION: For East Asian patients, pemetrexed-cisplatin combined with thoracic radiation therapy, followed by consolidation pemetrexed, did not improve overall survival but did have a good safety profile with a trend for improved progression-free survival and objective response rate compared to standard chemoradiotherapy for stage III unresectable nonsquamous non-small cell lung cancer.

Abe S, Kaneko MK, Tsuchihashi Y, et al.
Antitumor effect of novel anti-podoplanin antibody NZ-12 against malignant pleural mesothelioma in an orthotopic xenograft model.
Cancer Sci. 2016; 107(9):1198-205 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Podoplanin (aggrus) is highly expressed in several types of cancers, including malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM). Previously, we developed a rat anti-human podoplanin mAb, NZ-1, and a rat-human chimeric anti-human podoplanin antibody, NZ-8, derived from NZ-1, which induced antibody-dependent cellular cytotoxicity (ADCC) and complement-dependent cytotoxicity against podoplanin-positive MPM cell lines. In this study, we showed the antitumor effect of NZ-1, NZ-8, and NZ-12, a novel rat-human chimeric anti-human podoplanin antibody derived from NZ-1, in an MPM orthotopic xenograft SCID mouse model. Treatment with NZ-1 and rat NK (CD161a(+) ) cells inhibited the growth of tumors and the production of pleural effusion in NCI-H290/PDPN or NCI-H226 orthotopic xenograft mouse models. NZ-8 and human natural killer (NK) (CD56(+) ) cells also inhibited tumor growth and pleural effusion in MPM orthotopic xenograft mice. Furthermore, NZ-12 induced potent ADCC mediated by human MNC, compared with either NZ-1 or NZ-8. Antitumor effects were observed following treatment with NZ-12 and human NK (CD56(+) ) cells in MPM orthotopic xenograft mice. In addition, combined immunotherapy using the ADCC activity of NZ-12 mediated by human NK (CD56(+) ) cells with pemetrexed, led to enhanced antitumor effects in MPM orthotopic xenograft mice. These results strongly suggest that combination therapy with podoplanin-targeting immunotherapy using both NZ-12 and pemetrexed might provide an efficacious therapeutic strategy for the treatment of MPM.

Igawa S, Sasaki J, Otani S, et al.
Smoking History as a Predictor of Pemetrexed Monotherapy in Patients with Non-Squamous Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer.
Oncology. 2016; 91(1):41-7 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Pemetrexed monotherapy has come to be recognized as the standard of care for second-line therapy of non-squamous non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). Thymidylate synthase (TS) expression is recognized as a potential predictor of the response to pemetrexed-based chemotherapy in patients with advanced NSCLC. The purpose of this study was to identify useful predictors of the response to pemetrexed other than TS expression.
METHODS: The records of non-squamous NSCLC patients without driver mutations who received pemetrexed monotherapy as a second or later line of chemotherapy at Kitasato University Hospital between March 2009 and October 2015 were retrospectively reviewed, and the treatment outcomes were evaluated.
RESULTS: In the 116 patients with non-squamous NSCLC, the overall response rate and progression-free survival (PFS) were 10.3% and 2.1 months, respectively. The disease control rate and PFS differed significantly among current smokers and never-smokers/former light smokers (44.9 vs. 65.8%, and 1.8 vs. 4.0 months, respectively). Furthermore, multivariate analysis identified Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group Performance Status and smoking status as independent predictors of the PFS.
CONCLUSION: The clinical data obtained in this study may provide a valuable basis for the use of smoking status as a predictor of pemetrexed monotherapy in wild-type NSCLC patients.

Kimura T, Taniguchi H, Watanabe N, et al.
Phase II Study of Carboplatin and Pemetrexed in Advanced EGFR-wild-type Non-squamous Non-small Cell Lung Cancer: The Central Japan Lung Study Group Trial 0906.
Anticancer Res. 2016; 36(4):1767-71 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Several pre-clinical and clinical studies suggest a potential predictive role of epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) mutation in responsiveness to cytotoxic chemotherapy. The aim of this phase II study was to evaluate the efficacy and safety of pemetrexed-carboplatin combination as first-line chemotherapy in advanced non-squamous non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) limited to EGFR-wild-type cases.
PATIENTS AND METHODS: In this single-arm, multicenter clinical trial, patients received pemetrexed (500 mg/m(2)) and carboplatin (area under the curve=6) intravenously on day 1 every 3 weeks for three to six cycles. The objective response rate (ORR) was the primary end-point; secondary end-points included the disease control rate (DCR), progression-free survival (PFS), overall survival (OS) and safety.
RESULTS: A total of 54 patients were enrolled and 53 patients received therapy. No complete response was observed and partial response was observed in 19 (35.8%) cases, resulting in an ORR of 35.8% [95% confidence interval (CI)=23.1-50.2%]. Stable disease was observed in 20 (37.7%) patients and therefore the DCR was 73.6% (95% CI=59.7-84.7%). The median PFS was 5.4 months (95% CI=4.1-6.8 months) and the median OS was 12.7 months (95% CI=9.3-16.1 months). Treatment-related grade 3 or 4 hematological toxicities were neutropenia, leukopenia, anemia and thrombocytopenia in 35.8%, 11.3%, 30.2%, and 32.1% of patients, respectively. No grade 3 febrile neutropenia was observed, and grade 3 or 4 non-hematological toxicities were mild. There was no treatment-related death.
CONCLUSION: The pemetrexed-carboplatin combination was effective and well-tolerated in patients with EGFR-wild-type non-squamous NSCLC (UMIN-CTR number: UMIN000003393).

Jing XQ, Zhou L, Sun XD, et al.
Pemetrexed Maintenance Therapy Following Bevacizumab-Containing First-Line Chemotherapy in Advanced Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma: A Case Report and Literatures Review.
Medicine (Baltimore). 2016; 95(14):e3351 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) is a lethal disease with poor prognosis. The combination of cisplatin and pemetrexed has been confirmed as the standard of care for nonoperable MPM. Data have shown that the adoption of pemetrexed maintenance therapy (PMT) following first-line treatment appears extremely promising.We describe a 57-year-old man diagnosed as advanced MPM. We treated this patient with PMT after first-line cisplatin-based bevacizumab-containing chemotherapy and residual tumor disappeared after 6 course of PMT. A perfect response and a long progression-free survival (PFS) were reached with tumor mass disappearing and 14 months duration of PFS.This case suggests that adding bevacizumab to standard first-line chemotherapy is feasible and that PMT could be promising and useful for treating advanced MPM. We further entail a review of the literature on the first-line treatment, continuation maintenance therapy, switch maintenance therapy, and second-line treatment of patients with advanced MPM.

Quan R, Huang J, Chen N, et al.
A retrospective analysis of efficacy and safety of adding bevacizumab to chemotherapy as first- and second-line therapy in advanced non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC).
Tumour Biol. 2016; 37(8):11479-84 [PubMed] Related Publications
Several phase III clinical trials had authenticated that the addition of bevacizumab to paclitaxel plus carboplatin or gemcitabine plus cisplatin showed encouraging efficacy as first-line therapy for advanced NSCLC patients. However, the benefits of adding bevacizumab to other chemotherapy regimens in first- or second-line therapy have not been reported. To compare the clinical efficacy and safety of bevacizumab concomitant with chemotherapy regimens in patients with advanced NSCLC as first- or second-line therapy, we retrospectively reviewed the effects of adding bevacizumab to chemotherapy regimens in naive-chemotherapy and pre-chemotherapy patients with advanced non-squamous NSCLC. A total of 79 patients with advanced non-squamous NSCLC received at least two cycles of bevacizumab with chemotherapy between October 2010 and December 2013 were selected. Our primary end points were overall response rate (ORR) and disease control rate (DCR). The secondary objective was overall survival (OS) and safety. Seventy-nine patients were included in this study. Overall response rates at first evaluation (after 2 cycles) were 23.1 % (9/39) and 5.0 % (2/40) in first- and second-line therapy (P = 0.020), respectively. And disease control rates were 84.6 % (33/39) and 50 % (20/40), respectively (P = 0.001). The median OS were 27.2 months (95 % CI 13.3-41.1 months) and 29.6 months (95 % CI 6.7-52.5 months), respectively (P = 0.740). Grade 3-4 adverse events included leukopenia (2/39), and neutropenia (3/39) in first-line therapy versus neutropenia (1/40) and thrombocytopenia (2/40) in second-line treatment. In our experience, combination of bevacizumab and chemotherapy had encouraging anti-tumor efficacy as both first- and second-line therapy.

Losanno T, Gridelli C
Safety profiles of first-line therapies for metastatic non-squamous non-small-cell lung cancer.
Expert Opin Drug Saf. 2016; 15(6):837-51 [PubMed] Related Publications
INTRODUCTION: Lung cancer still represents the leading cause of death for cancer. About the 70% of diagnosis are in advanced-stage. Non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) represents the 85% of all diagnosed lung cancers and non-squamous histology represents the 40% of all NSCLC. First-line therapies increase survival, control symptoms and improve quality of life, compared with best supportive care. It is crucial to choose a treatment with a low impact on patient's life considering the related toxicities.
AREAS COVERED: Adverse events (AEs) of first-line therapies for non-squamous NSCLC are here reviewed and discussed, from evidences in clinical trials conducting to drugs approval.
EXPERT OPINION: For advanced disease, palliation and preserving patients QoL are still the primary goal of treatment. Therefore, differing toxicity profiles are often a deciding factor in first-line and also maintenance setting for non-squamous NSCLC. Special attention is necessary to renal function and drugs' nephrotoxicity. Moreover, it is to consider the specific AEs of drugs classes: hypertension, bleeding, and proteinuria, for anti-VEGF therapy; skin toxicity, diarrhea, interstitial lung disease for TKIs; vision disorders, and hepatotoxicity for ALK-inhibitor. It is important to select patients for a treatment on the basis of their comorbidities and the presence of risk factors.

Yoshii Y, Furukawa T, Matsumoto H, et al.
(64)Cu-ATSM therapy targets regions with activated DNA repair and enrichment of CD133(+) cells in an HT-29 tumor model: Sensitization with a nucleic acid antimetabolite.
Cancer Lett. 2016; 376(1):74-82 [PubMed] Related Publications
(64)Cu-diacetyl-bis (N(4)-methylthiosemicarbazone) ((64)Cu-ATSM) is a potential theranostic agent targeting the over-reduced state under hypoxia within tumors. Recent clinical Cu-ATSM positron emission tomography studies have revealed a correlation between uptake and poor prognosis; however, the reason is unclear. Here, using a human colon carcinoma HT-29 model, we demonstrated that the intratumoral (64)Cu-ATSM high-uptake regions exhibited malignant characteristics, such as upregulated DNA repair and elevated %CD133(+) cancer stem-like cells. Based on this evidence, we developed a strategy to enhance the efficacy of (64)Cu-ATSM internal radiotherapy (IRT) by inhibiting DNA repair with a nucleic acid (NA) antimetabolite. The results of the analyses showed upregulation of pathways related to DNA repair along with NA incorporation (bromodeoxyuridine uptake) and elevation of %CD133(+) cells in (64)Cu-ATSM high-uptake regions. In an in vivo(64)Cu-ATSM treatment study, co-administration of an NA antimetabolite and (64)Cu-ATSM synergistically inhibited tumor growth, with little toxicity, and effectively reduced %CD133(+) cells. (64)Cu-ATSM therapy targeted malignant tumor regions with activated DNA repair and high concentrations of CD133(+) cells in the HT-29 model. NA antimetabolite co-administration can be an effective approach to enhance the therapeutic effect of (64)Cu-ATSM IRT.

Barbone D, Van Dam L, Follo C, et al.
Analysis of Gene Expression in 3D Spheroids Highlights a Survival Role for ASS1 in Mesothelioma.
PLoS One. 2016; 11(3):e0150044 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
To investigate the underlying causes of chemoresistance in malignant pleural mesothelioma, we have studied mesothelioma cell lines as 3D spheroids, which acquire increased chemoresistance compared to 2D monolayers. We asked whether the gene expression of 3D spheroids would reveal mechanisms of resistance. To address this, we measured gene expression of three mesothelioma cell lines, M28, REN and VAMT, grown as 2D monolayers and 3D spheroids. A total of 209 genes were differentially expressed in common by the three cell lines in 3D (138 upregulated and 71 downregulated), although a clear resistance pathway was not apparent. We then compared the list of 3D genes with two publicly available datasets of gene expression of 56 pleural mesotheliomas compared to normal tissues. Interestingly, only three genes were increased in both 3D spheroids and human tumors: argininosuccinate synthase 1 (ASS1), annexin A4 (ANXA4) and major vault protein (MVP); of these, ASS1 was the only consistently upregulated of the three genes by qRT-PCR. To measure ASS1 protein expression, we stained 2 sets of tissue microarrays (TMA): one with 88 pleural mesothelioma samples and the other with additional 88 pleural mesotheliomas paired with matched normal tissues. Of the 176 tumors represented on the two TMAs, ASS1 was expressed in 87 (50%; staining greater than 1 up to 3+). For the paired samples, ASS1 expression in mesothelioma was significantly greater than in the normal tissues. Reduction of ASS1 expression by siRNA significantly sensitized mesothelioma spheroids to the pro-apoptotic effects of bortezomib and of cisplatin plus pemetrexed. Although mesothelioma is considered by many to be an ASS1-deficient tumor, our results show that ASS1 is elevated at the mRNA and protein levels in mesothelioma 3D spheroids and in human pleural mesotheliomas. We also have uncovered a survival role for ASS1, which may be amenable to targeting to undermine mesothelioma multicellular resistance.

Cirino C, Veltri E
Advanced epithelioid pleural mesothelioma, long lasting disease stabilization and long term survival with cisplatin-pemetrexed chemotherapy re-challenge: a case report.
Clin Ter. 2016; 167(1):10-2 [PubMed] Related Publications
In this paper we report the case of a seventy-year old man affected by epithelioid malignant mesothelioma with prolonged disease control after chemotherapy with cisplatin pemetrexed, followed by single drug chemotherapy with pemetrexed.

Svaton M, Fiala O, Pesek M, et al.
The Prognostic Role of KRAS Mutation in Patients with Advanced NSCLC Treated with Second- or Third-line Chemotherapy.
Anticancer Res. 2016; 36(3):1077-82 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND/AIM: The prognostic and predictive value of Kirsten rat sarcoma viral oncogene homolog (KRAS) mutation in non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) is not well established. The present study aimed at the elucidation of the role of KRAS mutation in prediction of outcome of patients with advanced NSCLC receiving second- or third-line chemotherapy.
PATIENTS AND METHODS: The outcome of 127 patients with advanced NSCLC who recieved pemetrexed or docetaxel at second- or third-line therapy was retrospectively analyzed.
RESULTS: Progression-free survival was not significantly different between patients with KRAS mutation and those with wild-type KRAS. The results were the same even when taking into account the specific KRAS mutation. Overall survival was significantly longer for patients with wild-type KRAS vs. those with KRAS mutation (16.1 vs. 7.2 months, p=0,008). We observed shorter overall survival for those with G12C KRAS mutation vs. other KRAS mutations (median 10.3 vs. 6.4 months, p=0.011).
CONCLUSION: The presence of KRAS mutation (especially KRAS G12C mutation) correlated with adverse prognosis in patients treated with second- or third-line pemetrexed or docetaxel.

Hu X, Pu K, Feng X, et al.
Role of Gemcitabine and Pemetrexed as Maintenance Therapy in Advanced NSCLC: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Randomized Controlled Trials.
PLoS One. 2016; 11(3):e0149247 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Gemcitabine and pemetrexed have been used as maintenance therapy. However, few systematic reviews and meta-analyses have assessed their effects in the newest studies. This systematic review and meta-analysis were conducted to assess the role of gemcitabine and pemetrexed in the maintenance treatment of non-small-cell lung carcinoma (NSCLC).
METHODS: We performed a literature search using PubMed, EMBASE and Cochrane library databases from their inceptions to September 16, 2015. We also searched the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO), European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO), and National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) databases from 2008 to 2015. Two authors independently extracted the data. The Cochrane Collaboration's risk of bias graph was used to assess the risk of bias. The GRADE system was used to assess the grading of evidence, and a meta-analysis was conducted using Stata 11.0 software.
RESULTS: Eleven randomized controlled trial (RCT) studies were collected. Ten studies were included in the meta-analysis and divided into the following 4 groups: gemcitabine vs. best supportive care (BSC)/observation, pemetrexed vs. BSC/placebo, pemetrexed + bevacizumab vs. bevacizumab and pemetrexed vs. bevacizumab. Gemcitabine exhibited significantly improved progression-free survival (PFS) compared with BSC (hazard ratio (HR) = 0.62, p = 0.000). Pemetrexed exhibited significantly improved PFS (HR = 0.54, p = 0.000) and OS (HR = 0.75, p = 0.000) compared with BSC. Pemetrexed + bevacizumab almost exhibited significantly improved PFS (HR = 0.71, p = 0.051) compared with bevacizumab. Pemetrexed exhibited no improvement in PFS or overall survival (OS) compared with bevacizumab. Regarding the grade, the GRADE system indicated that the gemcitabine group was "MODERATE", the pemetrexed group was "HIGH", and both the pemetrexed + bevacizumab vs. bevacizumab groups and pemetrexed vs. B groups were "LOW".
CONCLUSIONS: Gemcitabine or pemetrexed compared with BSC/observation/placebo significantly improved PFS or OS. Whether pemetrexed + bevacizumab compared with bevacizumab alone significantly improves PFS requires further investigation.

Bakirhan K, Sharma J, Perez-Soler R, Cheng H
Medical Treatment in Elderly Patients with Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer.
Curr Treat Options Oncol. 2016; 17(3):13 [PubMed] Related Publications
OPINION STATEMENT: Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer-related deaths worldwide. In the USA, ≈60 % of lung cancer cases are diagnosed in elderly patients (≥65 years of age). However, elderly patients are underrepresented in clinical studies, leading to a paucity of evidence to guide treatment decisions. Several treatment barriers exist in elderly patients, including comorbidities and poor performance status. In addition, lack of reliable geriatric assessment tools and physician reluctance to treat may contribute to undertreatment in this population. For decades, systemic chemotherapy for elderly patients with advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) was either omitted or given as monotherapy, frequently with significant dose reductions, potentially compromising the efficacy of these therapies. Recent analyses of elderly subgroups from multiple clinical trials provide evidence for improved outcomes associated with platinum-based doublet chemotherapies vs monotherapy. Moreover, in the new era of precision medicine, molecularly targeted therapies and more recently immune-targeting therapies (anti-PD-1 and anti-PD-L1 agents) exhibit relatively milder toxicities but superior clinical outcomes in subgroups of patients compared with conventional cytotoxic chemotherapies. Further clinical trials will be needed to confirm similar safety and efficacy profiles of these therapeutic approaches in the elderly compared with their younger counterparts. In this article, we review available evidence from clinical studies and also present expert consensus on the management of NSCLC in the elderly, including treatment in the adjuvant setting and treatment of advanced disease. Screening tools, such as the Comprehensive Geriatric Assessment, that help to identify the right population of elderly patients suitable for systemic treatment are also discussed.

Karayama M, Inui N, Fujisawa T, et al.
Maintenance therapy with pemetrexed and bevacizumab versus pemetrexed monotherapy after induction therapy with carboplatin, pemetrexed, and bevacizumab in patients with advanced non-squamous non small cell lung cancer.
Eur J Cancer. 2016; 58:30-7 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVES: Single agent maintenance therapy is widely accepted for advanced non-squamous non small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). However, there is no consensus on the initial and maintenance phase regimens, and the clinical benefit of adding bevacizumab to cytotoxic drugs in the maintenance phase remains unclear.
METHODS: Chemotherapy-naïve patients with non-squamous NSCLC were randomly assigned to maintenance therapy with pemetrexed and bevacizumab or pemetrexed alone, after achieving disease control after four cycles of induction therapy with carboplatin (area under the curve = 6), pemetrexed (500 mg/m(2)), and bevacizumab (15 mg/kg). The primary end-point was 1-year progression-free survival (PFS) rate.
RESULTS: One hundred ten patients were enrolled in the study, with 55 patients assigned to the two groups. The mean 1-year PFS rate was 43.9% (95% confidence interval [CI]: 29.6-59.2%) in the combination maintenance group and 35.2% (95% CI: 22.1-51.0%) in the pemetrexed maintenance group, and the difference was not significant (p = 0.433). Median PFS measured from enrolment was 11.5 months (95% CI: 7.1-19.0) in the combination maintenance group and 7.3 months (95% CI: 5.7-14.1, hazard ratio: 0.73, 95% CI: 0.44-1.19, log-rank p = 0.198) in the pemetrexed maintenance group. Nasal haemorrhage, hypertension, and proteinuria were significantly more frequent in the combination maintenance group, but they were mild and tolerable.
CONCLUSION: Both maintenance therapy with pemetrexed alone and pemetrexed and bevacizumab in combination were feasible in patients with non-squamous NSCLC who have achieved disease control after induction therapy with carboplatin, pemetrexed, and bevacizumab. According to the selection design, differences in the superiority between these maintenance therapies were not demonstrated.

Walter RF, Vollbrecht C, Werner R, et al.
microRNAs are differentially regulated between MDM2-positive and negative malignant pleural mesothelioma.
Oncotarget. 2016; 7(14):18713-21 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) is a highly aggressive tumour first-line treated with a combination of cisplatin and pemetrexed. MDM2 and P14/ARF (CDKN2A) are upstream regulators of TP53 and may contribute to its inactivation. In the present study, we now aimed to define the impact of miRNA expression on this mechanism.
MATERIAL AND METHODS: 24 formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded (FFPE) tumour specimens were used for miRNA expression analysis of the 800 most important miRNAs using the nCounter technique (NanoString). Significantly deregulated miRNAs were identified before a KEGG-pathway analysis was performed.
RESULTS: 17 miRNAs regulating TP53, 18 miRNAs regulating MDM2, and 11 miRNAs directly regulating CDKN2A are significantly downregulated in MDM2-expressing mesotheliomas. TP53 is downregulated in MDM2-negative tumours through miRNAs with a miSVR prediction score of 11.67, RB1 with a prediction score of 8.02, MDM2 with a prediction score of 4.50 and CDKN2A with a prediction score of 1.27.
CONCLUSION: MDM2 expression seems to impact miRNA expression levels in MPM. Especially, miRNAs involved in TP53-signaling are strongly decreased in MDM2-positive mesotheliomas. A better understanding of its tumour biology may open the chance for new therapeutic approaches and thereby augment patients' outcome.

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