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J Thorac Oncol. 2010 Apr;5(4):510-6. doi: 10.1097/JTO.0b013e3181cd3345.

Survival benefit of neoadjuvant chemotherapy in non-small cell lung cancer: an updated meta-analysis of 13 randomized control trials.

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Department of Thoracic Surgery, Chinese PLA General Hospital, Beijing, China.



The survival effectiveness of neoadjuvant chemotherapy in non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) is still unclear based on the study of most up-to-date literatures. This article contributes to this problem by conducting an updated meta-analysis.


Based on Burdett et al's (J Thorac Oncol 2006;1:611-621) systematic review, this meta-analysis was conducted. Articles were searched electrically. The possible survival benefit of neoadjuvant chemotherapy was assessed by hazard ratio (HR) in terms of overall survival. A subgroup meta-analysis with only stage III NSCLC was also conducted. The software of Review Manager was used for data management.


Thirteen randomized control trials, 6 of which were new ones, were included into this meta-analysis. The overall survival of NSCLC patients in neoadjuvant chemotherapy arm were improved significantly, comparing with those in surgery-alone arm (combined HR = 0.84; 95% confidence interval, 0.77-0.92; p = 0.0001). When only patients with stage III NSCLC were considered, the result was similar (combined HR = 0.84; 95% confidence interval, 0.75-0.95; p = 0.005).


Neoadjuvant chemotherapy, as an addition of surgery, would significantly improve the overall survival of operable NSCLC patients, including patients with stage III NSCLC.

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