Study for Inoperable Non-Metastatic Pancreatic CA (Stage IVA) With Neoadjuvant GTX, and Radiation With Gemzar

This study is ongoing, but not recruiting participants.
Information provided by (Responsible Party):
Robert L. Fine, Columbia University Identifier:
First received: March 23, 2009
Last updated: July 11, 2014
Last verified: July 2014
The purpose of this study is to determine whether an experimental drug combination consisting of Gemzar®, Taxotere®, and Xeloda®, (called GTX) when followed by radiation therapy plus low-dose Gemzar, is safe and effective in treating advanced pancreatic cancer and to study and enhance the utility of PET scans in the evaluation of patients with pancreatic cancer.

Condition Intervention Phase
Pancreatic Cancer Stage IVA
Drug: Gemcitabine, docetaxel, and capecitabine
Radiation: Radiation therapy with gemcitabine
Phase 2

Study Type: Interventional
Study Design: Allocation: Non-Randomized
Endpoint Classification: Safety/Efficacy Study
Intervention Model: Single Group Assignment
Masking: Open Label
Primary Purpose: Treatment
Official Title: Phase II Study for Inoperable Non-Metastatic Pancreatic Cancer (Stage IVA) With Neoadjuvant Gemzar, Taxotere and Xeloda (GTX), and Radiation With Gemzar

Resource links provided by NLM:

Further study details as provided by Columbia University:

Primary Outcome Measures:
  • Conversion rate of inoperable to operable [ Time Frame: 10 weeks ] [ Designated as safety issue: Yes ]

Estimated Enrollment: 35
Study Start Date: June 2005
Estimated Study Completion Date: December 2014
Estimated Primary Completion Date: December 2014 (Final data collection date for primary outcome measure)
Arms Assigned Interventions
Experimental: GTX Drug: Gemcitabine, docetaxel, and capecitabine
Day 1-14: Capecitabine 1500 mg/m2/day (+/- 2days) Day 4 and 11: Gemcitabine 750 mg/m2/day (+/- 2days) Day 4 and 11: Docetaxel 30 mg/m2/day (+/- 2 days) Two week treatment regimen is followed by one week off, repeated for a total of 3 cycles
Other Names:
  • Gemzar
  • Taxotere
  • Xeloda
Radiation: Radiation therapy with gemcitabine
Starting on week 12 +/- 5 days radiation therapy will be given in the standard manner over 5 weeks with daily radiation fractions Monday through Friday. Once a week gemcitabine will be given IV over 30 minutes at 250-300 mg/m2

Detailed Description:

The evolution of our regimen, consisting of Gemzar, Taxotere and Xeloda (oral 5FU) (GTX), was carefully developed over the past three years from laboratory and clinical work. Initially, in collaboration with Dr. William Sherman of the Division of Medical Oncology we assessed the clinical effects of two agents, Gemzar and Taxotere in pancreatic cancer patients. In our in vitro studies we found that as single agents these drugs (Gemzar and Taxotere) were minimally effective against pancreatic carcinoma lines, which expressed mutant p53 and activated mutated ras. Activated or mutant ras is found in approximately 95% of all pancreatic carcinomas. However, when the agents were added together in tissue culture experiments we found that their activity was additive. The clinical study performed at Columbia Presbyterian Medical Center demonstrated a 27% objective response rate by CT scan including one complete response with intent to treat analysis of all 15 patients within the study. The majority of these patients had metastatic liver disease and a minority had inoperable pancreatic carcinoma without liver metastases. Though this was a small single arm, single institution study it did suggest a trend towards improved responses in patients with this disease when these two agents were combined. In addition, valuable lessons were learned from the in vitro work with Gemzar and Taxotere. Importantly, we found that this combination was equally toxic to mutant and wild type p53 pancreatic cancer cells, as well as to cells with mutant ras. Also, docetaxel pharmacokinetics are more favorable and have distinct advantages over the use of the other taxane known as paclitaxel. They are the following: 1) Taxotere enters tumor cells more efficiently than paclitaxel because it is more lipophilic; 2) Taxotere is not pumped out by the cell by P-glycoprotein as efficiently as paclitaxel; 3) Taxotere' half life was significantly longer than that of paclitaxel such that a 60 minute infusion of Taxotere gives you approximate pharmacokinetics as paclitaxel when administered as a 24 hour continuous infusion. These laboratory studies from the literature formed the rationale for our use of Taxotere (docetaxel) instead of paclitaxel.

After our initial clinical and laboratory study we went back to the laboratory to investigate further some of the properties of Gemcitabine, Taxotere added to Xeloda (5-DFUR) in vitro to maximize biochemical synergy and to minimize toxicity. We found important characteristics of these drug combinations against pancreatic cancer cells that have been synthesized into the current protocol. We found that there was sequence specificity for these drugs in that 5-DFUR should precede Gemzar by 72 to 96 hours and Gemzar should be added before Taxotere to achieve maximum synergy. Taxotere cytotoxicity was dose dependent up to 20 nM but then no further cell kill was obtained past that point. This would mean that one would not need to use high dose Taxotere in a regimen because it would be doubtful whether increased doses would obtain further cell kill in a linear scale.

We investigated many different combinations of these 3 agents in the laboratory to determine the best combination to achieve biochemical synergy while decreasing the concentration of each drug and not lose anti-tumor effect so as to decrease toxicity to patients.


Ages Eligible for Study:   18 Years and older
Genders Eligible for Study:   Both
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   No

Inclusion Criteria:

  • Histologically confirmed adenocarcinoma of pancreas localized to the pancreas, small bowel, stomach and/or encasing the superior mesenteric artery, vein or portal vein. (a.k.a. Stage IV A).
  • No prior chemotherapy for their pancreatic cancer or radiation to the area of the tumor.
  • Measurable disease: Any mass reproducibly measurable in two perpendicular diameters by x-ray, physical examination, CT or MRI scans.
  • Ineligible for other high priority national or institutional studies
  • Whipple surgery not allowed. Prior surgery is allowed as long as it was not pancreatic resection (i.e. Whipple surgery) and the time from surgical recovery is greater than three weeks.
  • Non pregnant females who are not breast feeding with a negative serum β-HCG test within 1 week of starting the study. Men and women of childbearing potential must be willing to consent to using effective contraception while on treatment and for a reasonable period thereafter.
  • Clinical Parameters

    • Life expectancy > 2 months.
    • Age 18 to 70 years old
    • Performance status 0-2 (ECOG). (See Appendix IV)
    • Peripheral Neuropathy must be < grade 1
    • Able to tolerate oral medications
    • Absolute Neutrophil Count > 1,500 μl
    • White Blood Count > 3,000/μl
    • Platelet count > 100,000/μl
    • BUN < 1.5 x normal
    • Creatinine < 1.5 normal
    • Hemoglobin > 8.0 g/dl
    • Serum Albumin > 2.5 mg/dl
    • Total Bilirubin < 5.0 mg/dl
    • SGOT, SGPT, Alkaline Phosphatase < 4.0 x ULN
  • Hypersensitivity: Patients with a history of severe hypersensitivity reaction to Taxotere® or other drugs formulated with polysorbate 80 must be excluded.
  • Informed Consent: Each patient must be completely aware of the nature of his/her disease process and must willingly give consent after being informed of the experimental nature of the therapy, alternatives, potential benefits, side-effects, risks, and discomforts.
  • Prior malignancies in last 5 years other than: curatively treated carcinoma in-situ of the cervix, non-melanoma skin cancer, prostate or DCIS (ductal carcinoma in-situ) previously treated successfully (cancer free)
  • No serious medical or psychiatric illness preventing informed consent or intensive treatment (e.g., serious infection).
  • Patients known to have HIV will be excluded.
  • Patients cannot have received any prior investigational agent/therapy, nor will they be allowed any investigational agent/therapy while on protocol.
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Please refer to this study by its identifier: NCT00869258

United States, New York
Columbia University Medical Center
New York, New York, United States, 10032
Sponsors and Collaborators
Columbia University
Principal Investigator: Robert L Fine, MD Columbia University
  More Information

No publications provided

Responsible Party: Robert L. Fine, Associate Professor of Medicine at the New York-Presbyterian Hospital at the Columbia University Medical Center, Columbia University Identifier: NCT00869258     History of Changes
Other Study ID Numbers: AAAB8630  GTX IVA 
Study First Received: March 23, 2009
Last Updated: July 11, 2014
Health Authority: United States: Institutional Review Board

Additional relevant MeSH terms:
Pancreatic Neoplasms
Digestive System Diseases
Digestive System Neoplasms
Endocrine Gland Neoplasms
Endocrine System Diseases
Neoplasms by Site
Pancreatic Diseases
Anti-Infective Agents
Antimetabolites, Antineoplastic
Antineoplastic Agents
Antiviral Agents
Enzyme Inhibitors
Immunologic Factors
Immunosuppressive Agents
Molecular Mechanisms of Pharmacological Action
Pharmacologic Actions
Physiological Effects of Drugs
Radiation-Sensitizing Agents
Therapeutic Uses processed this record on February 07, 2016