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An International Randomized Phase III Study of First-line Erlotinib Followed by Second-line Cisplatin + Gemcitabine Versus First-line Cisplatin + Gemcitabine Followed by Second-line Erlotinib in Advanced Non Small Cell Lung Cancer

Phase 3
18 Years
Not Enrolling
Advanced Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer

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Trial Information

An International Randomized Phase III Study of First-line Erlotinib Followed by Second-line Cisplatin + Gemcitabine Versus First-line Cisplatin + Gemcitabine Followed by Second-line Erlotinib in Advanced Non Small Cell Lung Cancer

Chemotherapy for patients affected by advanced NSCLC has demonstrated only modest
improvement in survival rates over best supportive care: the prognosis of patients remains
poor and the side effects are considerable. Therefore, novel agents are urgently needed for
this disease. One way to improve effectiveness of therapies is to use non-chemotherapeutic
agents that act on biological targets and cause fewer systemic side effects.
Erlotinib(Tarceva)is a biological therapy that in recent clinical trials has shown promise
in first- and second-line treatment of advanced NSCLC.

In this trial, patients will be randomized to one of two treatment strategies:

- erlotinib taken by mouth daily; and, if disease progression occurs, to be followed by
chemotherapy with cisplatin and gemcitabine at standard doses for 6 cycles


- chemotherapy with cisplatin and gemcitabine given intravenously at standard doses for 6
cycles; and if disease progression occurs to be followed by erlotinib taken by mouth daily

The study is conducted with the partial support of Roche, S.p.A.

Inclusion Criteria:

- Diagnosis of cytologically or histologically confirmed non-small cell lung cancer

- Metastatic (stage IV) or locally advanced (stage IIIB, with metastasis to
supraclavicular nodes or with pleural effusion).

- Both patients at first diagnosis or those with disease recurrence after former
surgery are eligible.

- At least one target or non-target lesion according to RECIST criteria

- Male or female > 18 years of age (Italy upper age limit 70 years)

- ECOG PS 0 or 1

- Life expectancy of > 3 months

- Neutrophils > 1,500 mm3, platelets > 100,000 mm3, and hemoglobin > 9 g/dL

- Bilirubin level either normal or < 1.5 x ULN

- AST (SGOT) and ALT (SGPT) < 2.5 x ULN (< 5 x ULN if liver metastasis are present)

- Serum creatinine < 1.5 x ULN

- Effective contraception for both, male and female patients if the risk of conception

- Signed written informed consent

Exclusion Criteria:

- Prior exposure to agents directed at the HER axis (e.g. gefitinib, cetuximab,

- Prior chemotherapy or therapy with systemic anti-neoplastic therapy (e.g., monoclonal
antibody therapy) for advanced disease. Prior surgery and/or localised irradiation is
permitted. Prior neoadjuvant chemotherapy for operable disease or adjuvant
chemotherapy is permitted if it did not contain gemcitabine and if at least 1 year
elapsed from the end of chemotherapy and the date of relapse.

- Any unstable systemic disease (including active infections, significant
cardiovascular disease or myocardial infarction within the previous year, any
significant hepatic, renal or metabolic disease), metabolic dysfunction, physical
examination finding, or clinical laboratory finding that contraindicates the use of
study medications or render the patient at high risk from treatment complications.

- Any other malignancies within past 5 years (except for adequately treated carcinoma
in situ of the cervix or basal or squamous cell skin cancer or surgically resected
prostate cancer with normal PSA).

- Patients are excluded if they have brain metastasis or spinal cord compression that
has not yet been definitively treated with surgery and/or radiation; previously
diagnosed and treated CNS metastases or spinal cord compression without evidence of
stable disease (clinically stable imaging) for at least 2 months will also cause
patients to be excluded. Patients with asymptomatic CNS metastases and not requiring
steroids to control symptoms can be included, even if on anti-seizure medications.

- HIV positive patients

- Any inflammatory changes of the surface of the eye at baseline

- Patients who cannot take oral medication, who require intravenous alimentation, have
had prior surgical procedures affecting absorption, or have active peptic ulcer

- Nursing and/or pregnant females

- Known or suspected hypersensitivity to any of the study drugs.

Type of Study:


Study Design:

Allocation: Randomized, Endpoint Classification: Efficacy Study, Intervention Model: Parallel Assignment, Masking: Open Label, Primary Purpose: Treatment

Outcome Measure:

overall survival

Outcome Time Frame:

one year

Safety Issue:


Principal Investigator

Cesare Gridelli, M.D.

Investigator Role:

Principal Investigator

Investigator Affiliation:

S.G. Moscati Hospital, Avellino, Italy


Italy: Ethics Committee

Study ID:




Start Date:

December 2006

Completion Date:

June 2012

Related Keywords:

  • Advanced Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer
  • first-line
  • second-line
  • targeted therapy
  • Carcinoma, Non-Small-Cell Lung
  • Lung Neoplasms