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Lung Cancer. 2012 Oct;78(1):92-9. doi: 10.1016/j.lungcan.2012.07.009. Epub 2012 Aug 11.

Pharmacogenetic study of patients with advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) treated with second-line pemetrexed or pemetrexed-carboplatin.

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  • 1Division of Oncology, University Hospital of Parma, Parma, Italy.



To correlate candidate polymorphisms affecting pemetrexed and carboplatin activity with clinical outcome of patients with advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) treated in second-line with pemetrexed or pemetrexed plus carboplatin.


Functional polymorphisms in thymidylate synthase (TS), reduced folate carrier (RFC), gamma-glutamyl hydrolase (GGH), methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR) and xeroderma pigmentosum group D (XPD) genes were evaluated in 208 patients either treated within randomized phase II trials NVALT-7 and GOIRC-02.2006, comparing second-line pemetrexed with pemetrexed plus carboplatin, or with the same regimens outside of these trials. Univariate and multivariate analyses correlated genotyping data with response, clinical benefit, toxicity, progression-free (PFS) and overall survival (OS) using Pearson-χ2 test, log-rank test and Cox proportional hazards model.


Patients harboring the MTHFR-T667T variant had significantly longer PFS (5.4 versus 3.4 months; p=0.012) and OS (16.4 versus 8.5 months; p=0.026) than patients with CC-CT genotypes. No correlation was observed for other polymorphisms, except for XPD-Gln751Gln, which was associated with shorter PFS (p=0.021) and OS (p=0.044) in the subgroup of patients treated with pemetrexed plus carboplatin. Multivariate analysis confirmed the independent prognostic significance of MTHFR-C677T both in risk of disease progression (CC-CT genotypes hazard ratio [HR] 1.94, 95%CI 1.15-3.28; p=0.012) and of death (HR 2.00, 95% CI 1.12-3.54; p=0.018).


MTHFR-C667T polymorphisms appear to predict survival differences in pemetrexed-treated NSCLC. These results should be validated in larger and adequately designed prospective studies using pemetrexed.

Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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