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Radiat Oncol. 2017 Mar 27;12(1):62. doi: 10.1186/s13014-017-0800-5.

A phase II study of preoperative chemoradiation with tegafur-uracil plus leucovorin for locally advanced rectal cancer with pharmacogenetic analysis.

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Center for Colorectal Cancer, Research Institute and Hospital, National Cancer Center, Ilsan-ro 323, Goyang-si, Gyeonggi-do, 10408, Republic of Korea.
Department of Oncology, Asan Medical Center, University of Ulsan College of Medicine, 88, Olympic-ro 43-gil, Songpa-gu, Seoul, 05505, Republic of Korea.
Department of Laboratory Medicine, Research Institute and Hospital, National Cancer Center, 323 Ilsan-ro, Ilsandong-gu, Goyang-si, Gyeonggi-do, 10408, Republic of Korea.



This study aimed to evaluate the efficacy of a high dose of oral tegafur-uracil (400 mg/m2) plus leucovorin with preoperative chemoradiation of locally advanced rectal cancer and to explore the impact of polymorphisms of cytochrome P 2A6 (CYP2A6), uridine monophosphate synthetase (UMPS), and ATP-binding cassette B1 (ABCB1) on clinical outcome.


Patients with cT3 or cT4 rectal cancer were enrolled and were given tegafur-uracil 400 mg/m2/day and leucovorin 90 mg/m2/day for 7 days a week during preoperative chemoradiation (50.4 Gy/28 fractions) in this phase II trial. Primary endpoint was pathologic complete response rate, and the secondary endpoint was to explore the association between clinical outcomes and genetic polymorphisms CYP2A6 (*4, *7, *9 and *10), UMPS G638C, and three ABCB1 genotypes (C1236T, C3435T, and G2677T).


Ninety-one patients were given study treatment, and 90 underwent surgery. Pathologic complete response was noted in 10 patients (11.1%). There was no grade 4 or 5 toxicity; 20 (22.0%) experienced grade 3 toxicities, including diarrhea (10, 11.0%), abdominal pain (2, 2.2%), and anemia (2, 2.2%). Relapse-free survival and overall survival at 5 years were 88.6% and 94.2%, respectively. Patients with the UMPS 638 CC genotype experienced significantly more frequent grade 2 or 3 diarrhea (p for trend = 0.018).


Preoperative chemoradiation with tegafur-uracil 400 mg/m2/day with leucovorin was feasible, but did not meet the expected pathologic complete response rate. The UMPS 638 CC genotype might be a candidate biomarker predicting toxicity in patients receiving tegafur-uracil/leucovorin-based preoperative chemoradiation for locally advanced rectal cancer.


ISRCTN11812525 , registered on 25 July 2016. Retrospectively registered.


Chemoradiotherapy; Rectal neoplasms; Tegafur; Uridine monophosphate synthetase

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