Gemcitabine in advanced adult soft-tissue sarcomas. A phase II study of the EORTC Soft Tissue and Bone Sarcoma Group

Eur J Cancer. 2002 Mar;38(4):556-9. doi: 10.1016/s0959-8049(01)00408-7.


Gemcitabine (2'-deoxy-2'-difluorocytidine monohydrochloride) at a dose of 1250 mg/m(2) was given as a 30-min intravenous (i.v.) infusion on days 1 and 8 in a 3-weekly schedule to 32 patients with advanced soft-tissue sarcoma (STS) failing first-line chemotherapy. One patient was ineligible due to a delay between the previous chemotherapy and the start of treatment. Of the eligible patients, median age was 53 years (range 23-73 years). The predominant histological subtype was leiomyosarcoma in 12 patients (38%). The median number of cycles was three (range 1-8 cycles) with a median total dose of gemcitabine of 6.25 g/m(2) (range 1.25-19.97 g/m(2)). The relative dose intensity of gemcitabine was 96% (range 50-103%). Treatment was tolerated very well with non-complicated haematological toxicity as the most frequently observed side-effect. Only one partial tumour response was documented, giving a response rate of 3.23% (95% Confidence Interval (CI): 0.08-16.2%). The median overall survival was 268 days (95% CI: 129-377) and the median time to progression was 45 days (95% CI: 41-79). These results indicate that gemcitabine given at this dose and schedule is not active as second-line therapy in advanced STS.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Clinical Trial, Phase II
  • Multicenter Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Antimetabolites, Antineoplastic / administration & dosage*
  • Antimetabolites, Antineoplastic / adverse effects
  • Deoxycytidine / administration & dosage*
  • Deoxycytidine / adverse effects
  • Deoxycytidine / analogs & derivatives*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Infusions, Intravenous
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Sarcoma / drug therapy*
  • Sarcoma / pathology
  • Survival Analysis


  • Antimetabolites, Antineoplastic
  • Deoxycytidine
  • gemcitabine