Phase I/II study of cetuximab in combination with cisplatin or carboplatin and fluorouracil in patients with recurrent or metastatic squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck.


Journal Article

PURPOSE: This was an open, randomized, multicenter, phase I/II study to investigate the safety and tolerability of cetuximab in the first-line treatment of recurrent/metastatic squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck (SCCHN). PATIENTS AND METHODS: Treatment comprised cetuximab (initial dose 400 mg/m2 with subsequent weekly doses of 250 mg/m2) in combination with 3-week cycles of either cisplatin (100 mg/m2) or carboplatin (area under the curve, 5), each in combination with a 5-day infusion of fluorouracil (FU) at escalating doses of 600, 800, and 1,000 mg/m2/d. The study was divided into two phases: A, the first two cycles (6 weeks) focusing on the safety and tolerability of combination therapy; and B, the remaining time for those benefiting from therapy until disease progression or intolerable toxicity. RESULTS: Fifty-three patients were enrolled onto the study. The incidence of dose-limiting toxicities in phase A was acceptable. The most common grade 3/4 adverse events in both groups were leucopenia (38%), asthenia (25%), vomiting (14%), and thrombocytopenia (15%), which are consistent with the known safety profiles of cetuximab, cisplatin/carboplatin, and FU. The overall response rate among patients was 36%, with no clear trend toward an increased efficacy at the highest dose of FU, and no impact of the concomitant chemotherapy regimens on cetuximab pharmacokinetics. CONCLUSION: The combination of cetuximab, cisplatin/carboplatin, and FU was reasonably well tolerated and active in recurrent/metastatic SCCHN, and merits additional investigation. An FU dose of 1,000 mg/m2/d in combination with cisplatin or carboplatin can be recommended for additional studies.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Bourhis, J; Rivera, F; Mesia, R; Awada, A; Geoffrois, L; Borel, C; Humblet, Y; Lopez-Pousa, A; Hitt, R; Vega Villegas, ME; Duck, L; Rosine, D; Amellal, N; Schueler, A; Harstrick, A

Published Date

  • June 20, 2006

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 24 / 18

Start / End Page

  • 2866 - 2872

PubMed ID

  • 16717293

Pubmed Central ID

  • 16717293

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1527-7755

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1200/JCO.2005.04.3547


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States