Scientific publications

Combination of pegylated liposomal doxorubicin plus gemcitabine in heavily pretreated metastatic breast cancer patients: Long-term results from a single institution experience

Jul 1, 2018 | Magazine: The Breast Journal

Patricia Martin-Romano  1 , Iosune Baraibar  1 , Jaime Espinós  1 , Jairo Legaspi  1 , Jose M López-Picazo  1 , Jose Manuel Aramendía  1 , Oscar A Fernández  1 , Marta Santisteban  1


The combination of Pegylated Liposomal Doxorubicin (PLD) plus Gemcitabine (GEM) has been previously investigated in the treatment of metastatic breast cancer (MBC). PLD is a doxorubicin formulation with prolonged circulation time and better tissue distribution. GEM is a nucleoside analog with nonoverlapping toxicity compared to PLD.

The aim of our study was to assess efficacy, toxicity, and long-term outcome of this combination. Patients with heavily treated MBC were retrospectively analyzed. Chemotherapy consisted of PLD 25 mg/m2 and GEM 800 mg/m2 day 1, on a three-week schedule. Cardiac function was evaluated baseline and during treatment. Radiological response was graded according to RECIST criteria v1.1.

Toxicity was scored according to CTCAE v4.0. Progression-free survival (PFS) and overall survival (OS) were evaluated. From 2001 to 2014, 122 pts were included. Median age was 55 (range: 28-84). Median previous treatment schedules in the metastatic scenario were 3 (range: 1-15). Most patients received prior anthracyclines (85%).

Median number of metastatic sites was 2 (range: 1-7). Median number of cycles delivered was 5 (range: 1-36). Overall response rate was 31% (5% complete responses; 26% partial responses). Stable and progressive diseases were observed in 32% and 26% of patients. Grade ≥3 neutropenia was observed in 29 patients (24%). Grade ≥3 hand-foot syndrome was detected in 17 patients (14%), mostly since cycle 3 (88%). Median cumulative PLD dose was 125 mg/m2 .

At a median follow-up of 101 months, median PFS and OS were 7 and 22 months, respectively. PLD-GEM combination achieves remarkable long-term outcomes with an acceptable toxicity profile in patients with MBC.

CITATION  Breast J . 2018 Jul;24(4):473-479.  doi: 10.1111/tbj.12975.  Epub 2017 Dec 29