Gemcitabine and paclitaxel chemotherapy for advanced urothelial carcinoma in patients who have received prior cisplatin-based chemotherapy

Kunimitsu Kanai, Eiji Kikuchi, Takashi Ohigashi, Akira Miyajima, Ken Nakagawa, Jun Nakashima, Mototsugu Oya

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Background. The objective of this study was to evaluate the efficacy and toxicity of combination chemotherapy with gemcitabine and paclitaxel as a second-line regimen in patients with advanced urothelial carcinoma. Methods. Twenty patients with advanced urothelial carcinoma who were resistant to an M-VAC (methotrexate, vinblastine, doxorubicin, and cisplatin) chemotherapy regimen were administered chemotherapy consisting of intravenous gemcitabine 2500 mg/m2 and paclitaxel 150 mg/m2 (GP) every 2 or 3 weeks. Results. The patients received a median of 7.7 cycles of treatment (range, 2-20 cycles). Six of the 20 patients (30%; 95% confidence interval [CI], 10%-50%) had a major response to treatment (a complete response [CR] in 5% and a partial response [PR] in 25%). Seven patients (35%) had stable disease (SD). The median duration of response was 4.5 months (range, 1-9 months) and the disease control rate (CR + PR + SD) was 65%. The median survival was 11.5 months (range, 2-22 months) and the 1-year survival rate was 35%. The patients tolerated this regimen well, with only grade 3-4 neutropenia being observed in 6 patients (30%), anemia in 3 (15%), and thrombocytopenia in 1 (5%). The response rate to M-VAC in the first-line chemotherapy was significantly associated with the response to GP as the second-line chemotherapy. Conclusion. The combination of gemcitabine and paclitaxel is active and well tolerated as a second-line treatment in patients with advanced urothelial carcinoma.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)510-514
Number of pages5
JournalInternational Journal of Clinical Oncology
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2008 Dec 1



  • Gemcitabine
  • Paclitaxel
  • Second-line chemotherapy
  • Urothelial carcinoma

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Hematology
  • Oncology

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