Non-pegylated Liposomal Doxorubicin as Palliative Chemotherapy in pre-Treated Advanced Pancreatic Cancer: A Retrospective Analysis of Twenty-Eight Patients

Technol Cancer Res Treat. 2021 Jan-Dec:20:15330338211042139. doi: 10.1177/15330338211042139.


Background: Pancreatic cancer carries a devastating prognosis and is the fourth leading cause for cancer-related death in the United States and most European countries. Although one-third of patients receive a palliative third line therapy, the benefit of systemic therapy beyond second-line remains unclear. A plethora of clinical trials investigating novel drugs have failed over the past years. Due to the lack of established treatment regimens beyond second line, we offered nonpegylated liposomal doxorubicin, well known in other tumor entities, to pretreated pancreatic cancer patients requesting systemic therapy. Material and Methods: In this retrospective analysis, 28 patients with pancreatic carcinoma treated with nonpegylated liposomal doxorubicin (Myocet®) between 2012 and 2018 at our department were included. Results: For the majority of patients (n = 18, 64%), nonpeglyted liposomal doxorubicin was offered as a third-line therapy. Five patients received it as second line, four patients as fourth line, and one patient as fifth line of therapy. Half of the patients received at least a therapy cycle. The objective response rate to treatment was 7.1%. One patient had a period of radiologically confirmed stable disease with stable tumor markers. Another patient experienced partial remission. Conclusion: According to our findings the benefit of nonpegylated liposomal doxorubicin in pancreatic cancer beyond second line is limited.

Keywords: chemoresistance; chemotherapy; liposomal doxorubicin; palliative therapy; pancreatic cancer.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Antibiotics, Antineoplastic / therapeutic use*
  • Carcinoma / drug therapy*
  • Carcinoma / secondary
  • Doxorubicin / analogs & derivatives*
  • Doxorubicin / therapeutic use
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Palliative Care
  • Pancreatic Neoplasms / drug therapy*
  • Pancreatic Neoplasms / pathology
  • Polyethylene Glycols / therapeutic use
  • Retreatment
  • Retrospective Studies


  • Antibiotics, Antineoplastic
  • liposomal doxorubicin
  • Polyethylene Glycols
  • Doxorubicin