Raffaella Palumbo 1 , Federico Sottotetti 1 , Giuseppe Trifirò 2 , Elena Piazza 3 , Antonella Ferzi 4 , Anna Gambaro 3 , Elena Giulia Spinapolice 2 , Emma Pozzi 1 , Barbara Tagliaferri 1 , Cristina Teragni 1 , Antonio Bernardo 1
15 April 2015
A prospective, multicenter trial was undertaken to assess the activity, safety, and quality of life of nanoparticle albumin-bound paclitaxel (nab-paclitaxel) as second-line chemotherapy in HER2-negative, taxane-pretreated metastatic breast cancer (MBC).
Fifty-two women with HER2-negative MBC who were candidates for second-line chemotherapy for the metastatic disease were enrolled and treated at three centers in Northern Italy. All patients had previously received taxane-based chemotherapy in the adjuvant or first-line metastatic setting. Single-agent nab-paclitaxel was given at the dose of 260 mg/m 2 as a 30-minute intravenous infusion on day 1 each treatment cycle, which lasted 3 weeks, in the outpatient setting. No steroid or antihistamine premedication was provided. Treatment was stopped for documented disease progression, unacceptable toxicity, or patient refusal.
All of the enrolled patients were evaluable for the study endpoints. The objective response rate was 48% (95% CI, 31.5%–61.3%) and included complete responses from 13.5%. Disease stabilization was obtained in 19 patients and lasted >6 months in 15 of them; the overall clinical benefit rate was 77%. The median time to response was 70 days (range 52–86 days). The median progression-free survival time was 8.9 months (95% CI, 8.0–11.6 months, range 5–21+ months). The median overall survival point has not yet been reached. Toxicities were expected and manageable with good patient compliance and preserved quality of life in patients given long-term treatment.
Our results showed that single-agent nab-paclitaxel 260 mg/m 2 every 3 weeks is an effective and well tolerated regimen as second-line chemotherapy in HER2-negative, taxane-pretreated MBC patients, and that it produced interesting values of objective response rate and progression-free survival without the concern of significant toxicity. Specifically, the present study shows that such a regimen is a valid therapeutic option for that ‘difficult to treat’ patient population represented by women who at the time of disease relapse have already received the most active agents in the adjuvant and/or metastatic setting (ie, conventional taxanes).