A prospective randomized controlled trial of tumour chemosensitivity assay directed chemotherapy versus physician's choice in patients with recurrent platinum-resistant ovarian cancer

Anticancer Drugs. 2007 Oct;18(9):1093-101. doi: 10.1097/CAD.0b013e3281de727e.


The primary aim of this randomized trial was to determine response rate and progression-free survival following chemotherapy in patients with platinum-resistant recurrent ovarian cancer, who had been treated according to an ATP-based tumour chemosensitivity assay in comparison with physician's choice. A total of 180 patients were randomized to assay-directed therapy (n=94) or physician's-choice chemotherapy (n=86). Median follow-up at analysis was 18 months. Response was assessable in 147 patients: 31.5% achieved a partial or complete response in the physician's-choice group compared with 40.5% in the assay-directed group (26 versus 31% by intention-to-treat analysis respectively). Intention-to-treat analysis showed a median progression-free survival of 93 days in the physician's-choice group and 104 days in the assay-directed group (hazard ratio 0.8, 95% confidence interval 0.59-1.10, not significant). No difference was seen in overall survival between the groups, although 12/39 (41%) of patients who crossed over from the physician's-choice arm obtained a response. Increased use of combination therapy was seen in the physician's-choice arm during the study as a result of the observed effects of assay-directed therapy in patients. Patients entering the physician's-choice arm of the study during the first year did significantly worse than those who entered in the subsequent years (hazard ratio 0.44, 95% confidence interval 0.2-0.9, P<0.03). This small randomized clinical trial has documented a trend towards improved response and progression-free survival for assay-directed treatment. Chemosensitivity testing might provide useful information in some patients with ovarian cancer, although a larger trial is required to confirm this. The ATP-based tumour chemosensitivity assay remains an investigational method in this condition.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adenocarcinoma / drug therapy*
  • Adenocarcinoma / mortality
  • Adenocarcinoma / pathology
  • Antineoplastic Agents / administration & dosage
  • Antineoplastic Agents / pharmacology
  • Antineoplastic Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Cisplatin / administration & dosage
  • Cisplatin / pharmacology*
  • Cisplatin / therapeutic use
  • Disease-Free Survival
  • Drug Resistance, Neoplasm / drug effects*
  • Drug Screening Assays, Antitumor
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasm Recurrence, Local / drug therapy*
  • Neoplasm Recurrence, Local / mortality
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / drug therapy*
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / mortality
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / pathology
  • Practice Patterns, Physicians'*
  • Prospective Studies
  • Tumor Cells, Cultured


  • Antineoplastic Agents
  • Cisplatin