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Pemetrexed plus dendritic cells as third-line therapy for metastatic esophageal squamous cell carcinoma

Authors Zhang B, Li R, Chang C, Han Y, Shi S, Tian J

Received 27 February 2016

Accepted for publication 9 May 2016

Published 29 June 2016 Volume 2016:9 Pages 3901—3906

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/OTT.S107319

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewers approved by Dr Lucy Goodman

Peer reviewer comments 4

Editor who approved publication: Professor Min Li


Bin Zhang,1,* Rui Li,2,3,* Chun-Xiao Chang,2,3 Yong Han,2,3 Sheng-Bin Shi,2,3 Jing Tian2,3

1Department of Medical Oncology, Shandong Ji Ning First People’s Hospital, 2Department of Medical Oncology, Shandong Cancer Hospital, Shandong University, Shandong 3Department of Medical Oncology, Shandong Cancer Hospital and Institute, Shandong Academy of Medical Sciences, Jinan, People’s Republic of China

*These authors contributed equally to this work

Abstract: This study was conducted to evaluate the toxicity and efficacy of pemetrexed plus dendritic cells (DCs) when administered as third-line treatment for metastatic esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC). All patients in the study group had previously failed first-line treatment with 5-fluorouracil and cisplatin-based regimens, as well as second-line treatment with taxane-based regimens. A total of 31 patients were treated with pemetrexed (500 mg/m2) plus DCs on day 1, every 3 weeks. DCs were given for one cycle of 21 days. Thirty patients were evaluated for their response. No patient had a complete response, three patients (10.0%) had a partial response, ten patients (33.3%) had stable disease, and 17 patients (56.7%) had progressive disease. The overall response rate was 10.0%. The median progression-free survival (PFS) time was 2.9 months (95% CI, 2.7–3.2), and the median overall survival (OS) time was 7.1 months (95% CI, 6.4–7.9). The median PFS and OS times among patients with high and low levels of miR-143 expression in their blood serum were significantly different: median PFS times =3.2 months (95% CI, 2.9–3.4) and 2.7 months (95% CI, 2.4–3.0), respectively (P=0.017), and median OS times =7.8 months (95% CI, 6.8–8.9) and 6.3 months (95% CI, 5.3–7.3), respectively (P=0.036). No patient experienced Grade 4 toxicity. Combined third-line treatment with pemetrexed and DCs was marginally effective and well tolerated in patients with advanced ESCC. Serum miR-143 levels are a potential biomarker for predicting the efficacy of pemetrexed plus DCs in the treatment of ESCC.

Keywords: metastatic esophageal cancer, pemetrexed, dendritic cells, serum miR-143

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