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J Clin Oncol. 2005 Apr 20;23(12):2726-34.

Phase II clinical trial of ixabepilone (BMS-247550), an epothilone B analog, in metastatic and locally advanced breast cancer.

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Cancer Therapeutics Branch, Center for Cancer Research, National Cancer Institute, Bethesda, MD 20889-5015, USA.



Ixabepilone (BMS-247550) is an epothilone B analog that stabilizes microtubules and has antitumor activity in taxane-refractory patients in phase I studies. In a phase II trial, we evaluated the efficacy and safety of ixabepilone in women with metastatic and locally advanced breast cancer.


Breast cancer patients with measurable disease who had paclitaxel and/or docetaxel as prior neoadjuvant, adjuvant, or metastatic therapy were treated with ixabepilone at 6 mg/m2/d intravenously on days 1 through 5 every 3 weeks. Levels of glutamate (glu) -terminated and acetylated alpha-tubulin, markers of microtubule stabilization, were detected by Western blot and by immunohistochemistry in a subset of matched pre- and post-treatment tumor biopsies.


Thirty-seven patients received 153 cycles of ixabepilone. The best responses were a complete response in one patient (3%), partial responses in seven patients (19%), and stable disease in 13 patients (35%). Grade 3 and 4 toxicities included neutropenia (35%), febrile neutropenia (14%), fatigue (14%), diarrhea (11%), nausea/vomiting (5%), myalgia/arthralgia (3%), and sensory neuropathy (3%). Two patients were removed from study because of prolonged grade 2 or 3 neurotoxicity, and three patients were removed from study for other grade 3 and 4 nonhematologic toxicities. Compared with baseline levels, levels of both glu-terminated and acetylated alpha-tubulin were increased in tumor biopsies performed after ixabepilone therapy.


An objective response was seen in 22% of the patients in a population who had been previously treated with a taxane. Sensory neuropathy was mild with grade 3 neurotoxicity rarely seen. Microtubule stabilization occurred in tumor biopsies after treatment with ixabepilone.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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