Purpose: To assess the overall and progression-free survival, response rate, and toxicity of combined docetaxel and celecoxib in the treatment of patients with non-small cell lung cancer progressing after initial chemotherapy for advanced disease.
Patients and methods: Patients with non-small cell lung cancer and either measurable or evaluable disease experiencing progression after one or more platinum-based chemotherapy regimens given for advanced or metastatic disease, ECOG performance status 0-2, and adequate hematologic and biochemistry parameters were eligible for study inclusion; exclusion criteria included symptomatic brain metastases and full dose anti-coagulation. Therapy consisted of docetaxel 75 mg/m(2) every 21 days for a maximum of six cycles and celecoxib 400 mg orally twice daily commencing 7 days prior to docetaxel and continuing until disease progression.
Results: A total of 41 patients were enrolled of whom 39 were deemed eligible and received at least one course of docetaxel. The mean age of enrolled patients was 60.5 years (range, 44-77); 67% were men and 79% white. All but one patient had an Eastern Clinical Oncology Group (ECOG) performance status of 0 or 1. Most (72%) had been treated with a prior taxane. Overall survival was 11.3 months (95% confidence interval [CI]: 7.9, 15.7) and progression-free survival 19.6 weeks (95% CI: 13.5, 25.0). A response rate of 10.2% (95% CI: 3%, 24%) for all eligible and treated patients was found. Grade 3 or 4 neutropenia occurred in 10/39 patients (25.6%); one death due to neutropenic sepsis occurred. No grade 3 or 4 renal or hepatic toxicities were documented.
Conclusion: Treatment with combination celecoxib and docetaxel is a safe regimen with a toxicity profile similar to that of docetaxel alone. Survival data are encouraging compared to historical controls and may prolong time to disease progression compared with single-agent docetaxel.