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J Clin Oncol. 1997 Nov;15(11):3394-8.

Phase II study of single-agent gemcitabine in previously untreated patients with metastatic urothelial cancer.

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  • 1University of Chicago, and Northwestern University Medical School, Chicago, IL 60637, USA.



To determine the activity of single-agent gemcitabine in previously untreated patients with metastatic transitional cell cancer.


Forty patients with measurable disease and a Karnofsky performance status > or = 60% were enrolled at five institutions between March 1994 and October 1995. Treatment consisted of gemcitabine (1,200 mg/m2) administered weekly times three on a 4-week cycle. One patient was ineligible for response evaluation because pathology review showed a metastatic melanoma. Responses were confirmed by all investigators and an independent radiologist and were maintained for at least 4 weeks.


There were four complete and seven partial responses, for an overall response rate of 28%. Responses were seen at all sites, including liver. Median progression-free and overall survival times were 20 and 54 weeks, respectively. Toxicity was mild, with only two grade 4 toxicities. Twenty-five percent of patients experienced grade 3 neutropenia or thrombocytopenia that was rapidly reversible.


Gemcitabine exhibits significant activity in metastatic transitional cell cancer with minimal toxicity, but survival remains short. Trials of gemcitabine in combination with other active agents are thus suggested.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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