Background: The purpose of the study was to identify the potential predictive features associated with the response and survival benefit of gefitinib administration. We have retrospectively reviewed data of all patients who received a single regimen of gefitinib in our institution from August 1998 until July 2003.
Methods: Overall 101 patients with non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) who have received a single use of gefitinib were analyzed. Potential factors associated with the response of gefitinib included smoking index, gender, histology, performance status (PS), number of pre-treatments, age and stage. Univariate analysis was performed for these strata by Fisher's exact test and multivariate analysis was then performed using the logistic regression model.
Results: The overall response rate was 19.8%. Univariate analysis revealed that significant predictive factors were associated with the response for 'adenocarcinoma', 'female', 'good PS' (0-l) and 'non-smoker' categories. Multivariate analysis limited the predictive factors associated with the response for 'female' (P = 0.0032), 'good PS' (P < 0.02) and 'non-smoker' (P = 0.0417). In survival analyses, 'female' (P < 0.005), 'good PS' (P < 0.0001), and a low level of the smoking index (P < 0.05) indicated significantly prolonged survival. Response and survival data in elderly patients were equivalent to those in younger patients. Adverse events (AEs) were generally mild and were almost always skin reactions and diarrhea. Interstitial lung disease (ILD) occurred in 4% of the group under observation.
Conclusions: Gefitinib provided clinical benefit for the following factors 'female', 'good PS' and 'non-smoker'. A low smoking index is reported as a novel predictive prognostic factor following a single regimen of gefitinib.