Randomized phase II trial of weekly paclitaxel combined with carboplatin versus standard paclitaxel combined with carboplatin for elderly patients with advanced non-small-cell lung cancer

Ann Oncol. 2010 Apr;21(4):795-799. doi: 10.1093/annonc/mdp401. Epub 2009 Oct 8.


Background: The optimal platinum doublet regimen in elderly patients with non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) is still uncertain. We conducted a randomized phase II study to compare the efficacy and safety of weekly paclitaxel combined with carboplatin with those of the standard schedule.

Patients and methods: Elderly patients (age > or =70 years) with advanced NSCLC were randomly assigned to either the weekly arm {70 mg/m(2) paclitaxel on days 1, 8, and 15 and carboplatin [area under the curve (AUC) = 6] on day 1} or the standard arm [200 mg/m(2) paclitaxel and carboplatin (AUC = 6) on day 1]. The primary end point was the overall response rate (ORR).

Results: Eighty-two patients were enrolled. The ORR and median progression-free survival were 55% and 6.0 months for the weekly arm and 53% and 5.6 months for the standard arm. Grade 3/4 neutropenia and peripheral neuropathy were observed in 41% and 0% of the patients in the weekly arm and in 88% and 25% in the standard arm, respectively.

Conclusions: This is the first randomized study that compares the platinum doublet designed specifically for the elderly. Regarding the safety, the weekly regimen was less toxic than the standard regimen and seems to be preferable for elderly patients with advanced NSCLC.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Aged*
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Antineoplastic Combined Chemotherapy Protocols / administration & dosage*
  • Antineoplastic Combined Chemotherapy Protocols / adverse effects
  • Carboplatin / administration & dosage*
  • Carboplatin / adverse effects
  • Carcinoma, Non-Small-Cell Lung / drug therapy*
  • Disease Progression
  • Dosage Forms / standards
  • Drug Administration Schedule
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Lung Neoplasms / drug therapy*
  • Male
  • Paclitaxel / administration & dosage*
  • Paclitaxel / adverse effects
  • Paclitaxel / standards
  • Survival Analysis
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Dosage Forms
  • Carboplatin
  • Paclitaxel