Randomized phase II trial of carboplatin + nab-paclitaxel versus cisplatin + gemcitabine for chemotherapy-naive squamous cell carcinoma: North Japan lung cancer study group 1302

Lung Cancer

Int J Clin Oncol. 2020 Nov 13. doi: 10.1007/s10147-020-01828-1. Online ahead of print.


BACKGROUND: A subset analysis of the CA031 trial showed significant improvement in the overall response rate after administration of carboplatin plus weekly albumin-bound paclitaxel compared to carboplatin plus paclitaxel for squamous cell carcinoma of the lung (SQ). We conducted this phase II study to compare carboplatin plus weekly albumin-bound paclitaxel (CnP) to cisplatin plus gemcitabine (CG), a standard regimen for SQ.

METHODS: Chemotherapy-naïve patients with SQ were randomly assigned to receive cisplatin (80 mg/m2) on day 1 plus gemcitabine (1000 mg/m2) on days 1 and 8 every 3 weeks or carboplatin (area under the curve: 6 mg/mL/min) on day 1 plus nab-paclitaxel (75 mg/m2) on days 1, 8, and 15 every 3 weeks. The primary endpoint was overall response rate. The secondary endpoints were progression-free survival, overall survival, disease control rate, and toxicity.

RESULTS: Between June 2013 and October 2018, 71 patients were enrolled and assigned to either the CG arm (n = 35) or the CnP arm (n = 36) of the study. The overall response rate was 43% [95% confidence interval (CI) 27.3-58.5] in the CG arm and 47% (95% CI 31.7-62.7) in the CnP arm. Although drug combination efficacies did not differ, there were differences in toxicity: hematologic toxicities (leukopenia, neutropenia, and thrombocytopenia) were found mostly in the CG arm, whereas anemia and sensory neuropathy were more common in the CnP arm.

CONCLUSIONS: CnP had similar response as CG despite being a carboplatin-based regimen and toxicities differed between arms. Regarding ORR, CnP was comparable to CG for SQ.