Management strategies for recurrent platinum-resistant ovarian cancer

Drugs. 2011 Jul 30;71(11):1397-412. doi: 10.2165/11591720-000000000-00000.


Although ovarian cancer is often a chemosensitive malignancy, patients who are resistant to platinum-based chemotherapy represent a therapeutic challenge. Currently, the only drugs that are US FDA approved to treat this subset of patients are paclitaxel, pegylated liposomal doxorubicin (PLD) and topotecan. The response rates with these agents is in the 10-15% range and overall survival is around 12 months. Other drugs that have shown some activity in platinum-resistant ovarian cancer include the taxane analogues, oral etoposide, pemetrexed and bevacizumab. Unfortunately, randomized phase III trials of second-line chemotherapy in patients with platinum-resistant ovarian cancer have not shown an advantage over existing therapy with respect to progression-free survival or overall survival. The only trial that has reported a significant progression-free survival advantage over standard therapy is a randomized phase II trial of PLD with or without EC145, a folate-linked vinca alkaloid. Final survival results of this trial are pending.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Antineoplastic Agents / adverse effects
  • Antineoplastic Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Antineoplastic Combined Chemotherapy Protocols / therapeutic use
  • Clinical Trials as Topic
  • Drug Discovery / methods
  • Drug Resistance, Neoplasm*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / drug therapy*
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / mortality
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / pathology
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / surgery*
  • Platinum / therapeutic use*
  • Recurrence


  • Antineoplastic Agents
  • Platinum