Purpose: The renin-angiotensin system plays a crucial role in maintaining vascular homeostasis. Stimulation of angiotensin II type 1 receptors (AT1R) acts proangiogenically by increasing levels of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF). Consequently, cell culture experiments and animal studies have shown antiproliferative effects of AT1R blockers (ARB) and angiotensin I converting enzyme inhibitors (ACEI) in several malignancies. Until now, very limited clinical data for this antiangiogenic effect exists for combinations with antineoplastic chemotherapy.
Methods: A total of 287 patients with advanced non-small-cell lung cancer undergoing first-line platinum-based chemotherapy were retrospectively analysed regarding long-term medication with ACEI and ARB as well as histological type, stage, performance status, gender, age, dose-intensity of chemotherapy and survival.
Results: Patients receiving either ACEI or ARB had a 3.1 months longer median survival than non-recipients (11.7 vs. 8.6 months, HR 0.56, P = 0.03). This survival advantage could not be attributed to other established risk-factors or dose intensity of chemotherapy.
Conclusions: Addition of ACEI or ARB to platinum-based first-line chemotherapy may contribute to prolonged survival in patients with advanced lung cancer.