Second-line FOLFOX chemotherapy versus active symptom control for advanced biliary tract cancer (ABC-06): a phase 3, open-label, randomised, controlled trial
Palmer, D. H.
Wasan, H. S.
Ross, P. J.
Ma, Y. T.
Waters, J. S.
Ryder, W. D.
Davies, L. M.
Bridgewater, J. A.
Valle, Juan W
AffiliationDepartment of Medical Oncology, The Christie NHS Foundation Trust/Institute of Cancer Sciences, University of Manchester, Manchester, U
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AbstractBackground: Advanced biliary tract cancer has a poor prognosis. Cisplatin and gemcitabine is the standard first-line chemotherapy regimen, but no robust evidence is available for second-line chemotherapy. The aim of this study was to determine the benefit derived from second-line FOLFOX (folinic acid, fluorouracil, and oxaliplatin) chemotherapy in advanced biliary tract cancer. Methods: The ABC-06 clinical trial was a phase 3, open-label, randomised trial done in 20 sites with expertise in managing biliary tract cancer across the UK. Adult patients (aged ≥18 years) who had histologically or cytologically verified locally advanced or metastatic biliary tract cancer (including cholangiocarcinoma and gallbladder or ampullary carcinoma) with documented radiological disease progression to first-line cisplatin and gemcitabine chemotherapy and an Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group performance status of 0-1 were randomly assigned (1:1) centrally to active symptom control (ASC) and FOLFOX or ASC alone. FOLFOX chemotherapy was administered intravenously every 2 weeks for a maximum of 12 cycles (oxaliplatin 85 mg/m2, L-folinic acid 175 mg [or folinic acid 350 mg], fluorouracil 400 mg/m2 [bolus], and fluorouracil 2400 mg/m2 as a 46-h continuous intravenous infusion). Randomisation was done following a minimisation algorithm using platinum sensitivity, serum albumin concentration, and stage as stratification factors. The primary endpoint was overall survival, assessed in the intention-to-treat population. Safety was also assessed in the intention-to-treat population. The study is complete and the final results are reported. This trial is registered with ClinicalTrials.gov, NCT01926236, and EudraCT, 2013-001812-30. Findings: Between March 27, 2014, and Jan 4, 2018, 162 patients were enrolled and randomly assigned to ASC plus FOLFOX (n=81) or ASC alone (n=81). Median follow-up was 21·7 months (IQR 17·2-30·8). Overall survival was significantly longer in the ASC plus FOLFOX group than in the ASC alone group, with a median overall survival of 6·2 months (95% CI 5·4-7·6) in the ASC plus FOLFOX group versus 5·3 months (4·1-5·8) in the ASC alone group (adjusted hazard ratio 0·69 [95% CI 0·50-0·97]; p=0·031). The overall survival rate in the ASC alone group was 35·5% (95% CI 25·2-46·0) at 6 months and 11·4% (5·6-19·5) at 12 months, compared with 50·6% (39·3-60·9) at 6 months and 25·9% (17·0-35·8) at 12 months in the ASC plus FOLFOX group. Grade 3-5 adverse events were reported in 42 (52%) of 81 patients in the ASC alone group and 56 (69%) of 81 patients in the ASC plus FOLFOX group, including three chemotherapy-related deaths (one each due to infection, acute kidney injury, and febrile neutropenia). The most frequently reported grade 3-5 FOLFOX-related adverse events were neutropenia (ten [12%] patients), fatigue or lethargy (nine [11%] patients), and infection (eight [10%] patients). Interpretation: The addition of FOLFOX to ASC improved median overall survival in patients with advanced biliary tract cancer after progression on cisplatin and gemcitabine, with a clinically meaningful increase in 6-month and 12-month overall survival rates. To our knowledge, this trial is the first prospective, randomised study providing reliable, high-quality evidence to allow an informed discussion with patients of the potential benefits and risks from second-line FOLFOX chemotherapy in advanced biliary tract cancer. Based on these findings, FOLFOX should become standard-of-care chemotherapy in second-line treatment for advanced biliary tract cancer and the reference regimen for further clinical trials.
CitationLamarca A, Palmer DH, Wasan HS, Ross PJ, Ma YT, Arora A, et al. Second-line FOLFOX chemotherapy versus active symptom control for advanced biliary tract cancer (ABC-06): a phase 3, open-label, randomised, controlled trial. The Lancet Oncology. 2021.
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