The inhibition of topoisomerase I by topotecan results in a compensatory increase in topoisomerase II associated with increased in vitro sensitivity of tumors to etoposide. Maximal synergy has been observed for the sequence of topotecan followed by etoposide. Carboplatin has clinical activity when combined with either of these two agents. These interactions were the pharmacologic rationale for topotecan p.o. days 1-5, carboplatin i.v. day 6, and etoposide p.o. days 6-10. Three successive dose levels were explored: (1) topotecan 2 mg/day, carboplatin AUC 5, etoposide 150 mg/day; (2) topotecan 3 mg/day, carboplatin AUC 5, etoposide 150 mg/day; and (3) topotecan 3 mg/day, carboplatin AUC 5, etoposide 200 mg/day. Filgrastim 5 μg/kg/day was injected s.c. days 11-18. Up to 6 cycles were administered every 21 days. Eligible patients had measurable or evaluable, extensive disease, small lung cell lung cancer, no prior chemotherapy, ECOG performance status 0-2, and adequate hematologic, renal, and hepatic function. Follow-up was weekly for CBC. Tumor response was assessed after 2 and 6 cycles. Dose limiting toxicity (DLT) was defined as any of the following in cycle 1: grade 3 or 4 non-hematologic toxicity other than nausea and vomiting, grade 4 neutropenia lasting more than 3 days, neutropenic fever or sepsis, grade 4 thrombocytopenia, or failure to recover neutrophils ≥1500/μl or platelets ≥100,000/μl by day 28. Ten patients were enrolled: median age 62 (range, 50-79); female/male 4/6; and performance status 0/1/2 in 2/7/1. Three patients each were treated on dose levels 1 and 2 without DLT. The first 2 patients entered on dose level 3 had no DLT. The third patient on dose level 3 developed grade 4 neutropenia lasting more than 3 days, neutropenic fever, and grade 4 thrombocytopenia on day 15 of cycle 1. The fourth patient on dose level 3 developed grade 4 thrombocytopenia on day 18 of cycle 1. One patient received only 1 cycle and was not evaluable for response. Seven patients completed 6 cycles: 1 had a complete response and 6 achieved a partial response. The third patient on dose level 3 received 2 cycles and had stable disease, but had to be removed from protocol treatment because of grade 4 neutropenia despite dose reduction in cycle 2. The fourth patient on dose level 3 achieved a partial response, but had to be removed from protocol therapy after cycle 5 because of recurrent grade 4 thrombocytopenia. In conclusion, neutropenia and thrombocytopenia were dose-limiting. The maximum tolerated dose (MTD) is topotecan 3 mg/day p.o. days 1-5, carboplatin AUC 5 i.v. day 6, and etoposide 150 mg/day p.o. days 6-10 with filgrastim.
- Phase I
- Small cell lung cancer
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
- Cancer Research