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J Thorac Oncol. 2009 Jan;4(1):87-92. doi: 10.1097/JTO.0b013e3181915052.

Bortezomib plus gemcitabine/carboplatin as first-line treatment of advanced non-small cell lung cancer: a phase II Southwest Oncology Group Study (S0339).

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  • 1Department of Hematology/Oncology, University of California, Davis Cancer Center, Sacramento, California, USA.



Bortezomib is a small-molecule proteasome inhibitor with single-agent activity in patients with non-small cell lung carcinoma (NSCLC) and synergy with gemcitabine in preclinical studies. This phase II study of bortezomib in combination with gemcitabine/carboplatin was conducted in chemotherapy-naive advanced NSCLC patients to assess efficacy and safety.


Patients with selected stage IIIB/IV NSCLC, performance status 0-1, and no history of brain metastasis received up to six 21-day cycles of gemcitabine 1000 mg/m, days 1 and 8, carboplatin area under curve 5.0, day 1, and bortezomib 1.0 mg/m, days 1, 4, 8, and 11.


One-hundred-fourteen patients (52% adenocarcinoma, 85% stage IV) received a median of 3.6 treatment cycles. Median follow-up was >3 years. Median overall survival was 11 months; 1-year and 2-year survival rates were 47% and 19%, respectively. Median progression-free survival was 5 months; 1-year progression-free survival rate was 7%. Response rate was 23%, and disease control rate (responses + stable disease) was 68%. The most common grade 3/4 toxicities were thrombocytopenia (63%) and neutropenia (52%). One patient experienced febrile neutropenia. Grade 3/4 neuropathy occurred in 4%, and a further 6% experienced grade 2 sensory neuropathy.


Bortezomib plus gemcitabine/carboplatin resulted in a notable survival benefit in patients with advanced NSCLC, with the anticipated primary toxicity of myelosuppression. Further studies designed to investigate the role of bortezomib in advanced NSCLC are warranted.

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