FOLFOX-6 combination as the first-line treatment of locally advanced and/or metastatic pancreatic cancer

Marwan Ghosn 1Fadi FarhatJoseph KattanFariha YounesWalid MoukademFadi NasrGeorges Chahine


1Hotel-Dieu de France University Hospital, Beirut, Lebanon.

PMID: 17278889

 DOI: 10.1097/01.coc.0000235997.18657.a6


Objective: Advanced pancreatic carcinoma (APC) has a poor prognosis and chemotherapy remains the most common approach. Gemcitabine was the only drug recently approved for use as single agent therapy in APC. However, the combination of oxaliplatin and 5-fluorouracil (5-FU) has shown some promising results. This phase II trial was conducted to investigate the efficacy of oxaliplatin, 5-FU, and folinic acid (FOLFOX-6) in previously untreated APC patients.

Methods: We studied response rate, time to progression, and toxicity profile. Treatment included oxaliplatin 100 mg/m2 and folinic acid 400 mg/m2 on day 1 followed by a 5-FU bolus 400 mg/m2 and a 46-hour infusion of 3000 mg/m2 every 2 weeks.

Results: From January 2003 through December 2004, 30 eligible patients were included. Median age was 65 (range, 38-75). There were 22 patients who had metastatic disease and 29 had an adenocarcinoma. A total of 181 cycles were delivered with a mean of 6 cycles per patient. There were 23 patients evaluable for response. There were 8 patients with partial response (27.6% response rate) and 10 with stable disease status (34.5%), while tumor growth control was found in 62% of the patients. Recorded toxicities of grade 3/4 were: neutropenia (26.67%), thrombocytopenia and anemia (10% each), diarrhea (6.67%), and mucositis (3.33%). Neurosensory toxicity was mild. The median time to progression and the median survival were 4 and 7.5 months, respectively.

Conclusion: In patients with APC, FOLFOX-6 regimen achieved an interesting response rate within a tolerable level of toxicity. This regimen seems to warrant further controlled investigation to confirm its efficacy.