We're building a better ClinicalTrials.gov. Check it out and tell us what you think!
Try the New Site
We're building a modernized ClinicalTrials.gov! Visit Beta.ClinicalTrials.gov to try the new functionality.
ClinicalTrials.gov Menu

Pembrolizumab Plus Docetaxel for the Treatment of Recurrent or Metastatic Head and Neck Cancer

The safety and scientific validity of this study is the responsibility of the study sponsor and investigators. Listing a study does not mean it has been evaluated by the U.S. Federal Government. Read our disclaimer for details.
ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT02718820
Recruitment Status : Unknown
Verified June 2021 by Thorsten Fuereder, Medical University of Vienna.
Recruitment status was:  Active, not recruiting
First Posted : March 24, 2016
Last Update Posted : June 18, 2021
Information provided by (Responsible Party):
Thorsten Fuereder, Medical University of Vienna

Brief Summary:
Squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck, which accounts for 90% of head and neck cancers, is the tenth most common cancer worldwide with over 650000 new cases per year. The major risk factors for HNSCC development comprise alcohol and tobacco consumption. During the last decades human papilloma virus infection (HPV) has been identified to contribute to the development of oropharyngeal HNSCC in a subgroup of patients5. Standard treatment options include surgery, (chemo)radiation and chemotherapy. Despite improvements of treatment regimens the recurrence rate of stage III/IV disease after curative therapy is about 30-40%. In locoregionally unresectable recurrent or metastatic disease palliative poly-chemotherapy is the mainstay of therapy.The median survival time of these patients is 6-8 months. Based on the results of the EXTREME study a combination regimen containing a platinum drug, 5 fluorouracil (5-FU) and weekly cetuximab has become standard of care in this setting. For patients, who progressed after platinum based therapy, treatment options are scarce. Besides platinum drugs, taxanes such as paclitaxel or docetaxel were shown to be of particular use in this setting. Apart from that there has been increasing preclinical and clinical evidence that immune-checkpoint inhibitors such as pembrolizumab might play a role in HNSCC. Thus, it is the aim of this study to test if the combination of docetaxel and pembrolizumab after platinum failure is an effective and safe regimen.

Condition or disease Intervention/treatment Phase
Head and Neck Carcinoma Drug: Docetaxel Drug: Pembrolizumab Phase 1 Phase 2

Detailed Description:
not provided

Layout table for study information
Study Type : Interventional  (Clinical Trial)
Estimated Enrollment : 22 participants
Allocation: N/A
Intervention Model: Single Group Assignment
Masking: None (Open Label)
Primary Purpose: Treatment
Official Title: Immunomodulation of Pembrolizumab Plus Docetaxel for the Treatment of Recurrent or Metastatic (R/M) Squamous Cell Carcinoma of the Head and Neck (HNSCC) After Platinum Failure
Study Start Date : March 2016
Estimated Primary Completion Date : August 2021
Estimated Study Completion Date : August 2021

Resource links provided by the National Library of Medicine

Arm Intervention/treatment
Experimental: Docetaxel plus pembrolizumab
Docetaxel 75mg/m2 plus pembrolizumab 200mg will be administered every 3 weeks intravenously for 6 cycles. Thereafter pembrolizumab 200mg every 3 weeks will be given as maintenance therapy until progression.
Drug: Docetaxel
Docetaxel 75mg/m2; q21
Other Name: Taxotere

Drug: Pembrolizumab
Pembrolizumab 200mg, q21
Other Name: Keytruda

Primary Outcome Measures :
  1. Overall response rate [ Time Frame: 1 year ]
    Overall response rate will be measured

Secondary Outcome Measures :
  1. Best overall response categories i.e. complete response (CR), partial response (PR), stable disease (SD) and progressive disease (PD) given in percentages of the total study population [ Time Frame: 1 year ]
  2. Individual duration of response over time [ Time Frame: 1 year ]
  3. To report changes in the in health-related quality-of-life scores per patient measured according to the European Organisation for Research and Treatment of Cancer (EORTC) quality of life questionnaire (QLQ) C-30 scoring manual [ Time Frame: 1 year ]
  4. To report changes in the in health-related quality-of-life scores per patient measured according to the European Organisation for Research and Treatment of Cancer (EORTC) quality of life questionnaire (QLQ) H&N35 scoring manual [ Time Frame: 1 year ]
  5. Median Overall Survival (OS) [ Time Frame: 1 year ]
    Kaplan meier curves will be calculated and OS in months measured

  6. Number of participants with treatment-related adverse events as assessed by CTCAE v4.0 [ Time Frame: 1 year ]
  7. Median Progression Free Survival (PFS) [ Time Frame: 1 year ]
    Kaplan meier curves will be calculated and PFS in months measured

Information from the National Library of Medicine

Choosing to participate in a study is an important personal decision. Talk with your doctor and family members or friends about deciding to join a study. To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the contacts provided below. For general information, Learn About Clinical Studies.

Layout table for eligibility information
Ages Eligible for Study:   18 Years and older   (Adult, Older Adult)
Sexes Eligible for Study:   All
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   No

Inclusion Criteria:

  • The patient has provided written informed consent prior to any study-related procedure.
  • The patient is at least 18 years of age
  • Histologically proven locally advanced unresectable, recurrent and/or metastatic squamous cell carcinoma of the oropharynx, hypopharynx, larynx or oral cavity not amenable for salvage surgery
  • P16 mutation status has to be determined
  • Documented progressive disease based on investigator assessment according to RECIST 1.1, following receipt of a cisplatin and/or carboplatin based regimen independent of whether patient progressed during or after platinum based therapy. Platinum therapy might have been administered either as part of induction chemotherapy (12 months), chemoradiation (6 months) or as first line systemic palliative chemotherapy (6 months).
  • Measurable disease according to RECIST 1.1.
  • The patient has a life expectancy of at least 3 months.
  • Has a performance status of 0 or 1 on the Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group (ECOG) Performance Scale
  • Female subject of childbearing potential should have a negative urine or serum pregnancy prior to study registration and re-tested within 72 hours prior to receiving the first dose of study medication. If the urine test is positive or cannot be confirmed as negative, a serum pregnancy test will be required.
  • Female subjects of childbearing potential should be willing to use 2 methods of birth control or be surgically sterile, or abstain from heterosexual activity for the course of the study through 120 days after the last dose of study medication. Subjects of childbearing potential are those who have not been surgically sterilized or have not been free from menses for > 1 year.
  • Male subjects should agree to use an adequate method of contraception starting with the first dose of study therapy through 120 days after the last dose of study therapy.
  • Demonstrate adequate organ function as defined in Table 1, all screening labs should be performed within 10 days of treatment initiation.

Exclusion Criteria:

  • Prior taxane therapy is not allowed except as part of induction therapy (at least 6 months before study entry)
  • Nasopharyngeal carcinomas or salivary glands cancers are not eligible
  • Is currently participating and receiving study therapy or has participated in a study of an investigational agent and received study therapy or used an investigational device within 4 weeks of the first dose of treatment.
  • Has a diagnosis of immunodeficiency or is receiving systemic steroid therapy or any other form of immunosuppressive therapy within 7 days prior to the first dose of trial treatment.
  • Has a known history of active Bacillus Tuberculosis (TB)
  • Hypersensitivity to pembrolizumab or any of its excipients.
  • Has had a prior anti-cancer monoclonal antibody (mAb) within 4 weeks prior to study Day 1 or who has not recovered (i.e., ≤ Grade 1 or at baseline) from adverse events due to agents administered more than 4 weeks earlier.
  • Has had prior chemotherapy, targeted small molecule therapy, or radiation therapy within 2 weeks prior to study Day 1 or who has not recovered (i.e., ≤ Grade 1 or at baseline) from adverse events due to a previously administered agent.
  • Note: If subject received major surgery, they must have recovered adequately from the toxicity and/or complications from the intervention prior to starting therapy.
  • Has a known additional malignancy that is progressing or requires active treatment. Exceptions include basal cell carcinoma of the skin or squamous cell carcinoma of the skin that has undergone potentially curative therapy or in situ cervical cancer.
  • Has known active central nervous system (CNS) metastases and/or carcinomatous meningitis. Subjects with previously treated brain metastases may participate provided they are stable (without evidence of progression by imaging for at least four weeks prior to the first dose of trial treatment and any neurologic symptoms have returned to baseline), have no evidence of new or enlarging brain metastases, and are not using steroids for at least 7 days prior to trial treatment. This exception does not include carcinomatous meningitis which is excluded regardless of clinical stability.
  • Has active autoimmune disease that has required systemic treatment in the past 2 years (i.e. with use of disease modifying agents, corticosteroids or immunosuppressive drugs). Replacement therapy (e.g. thyroxine, insulin, or physiologic corticosteroid replacement therapy for adrenal or pituitary insufficiency, etc.) is not considered a form of systemic treatment.
  • Has known history of, or any evidence of active, non-infectious pneumonitis.
  • Has an active infection requiring systemic therapy.
  • Has a history or current evidence of any condition, therapy, or laboratory abnormality that might confound the results of the trial, interfere with the subject's participation for the full duration of the trial, or is not in the best interest of the subject to participate, in the opinion of the treating investigator.
  • Has known psychiatric or substance abuse disorders that would interfere with cooperation with the requirements of the trial.
  • Is pregnant or breastfeeding, or expecting to conceive or father children within the projected duration of the trial, starting with the pre-screening or screening visit through 120 days after the last dose of trial treatment.
  • Has received prior therapy with an anti-PD-1, anti-PD-L1, or anti-PD-L2 agent.
  • Has a known history of Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) (HIV 1/2 antibodies).
  • Has known active Hepatitis B (e.g., HBsAg reactive) or Hepatitis C Virus (HCV) RNA [qualitative] is detected.
  • Has received a live vaccine within 30 days of planned start of study therapy.

Information from the National Library of Medicine

To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the contact information provided by the sponsor.

Please refer to this study by its ClinicalTrials.gov identifier (NCT number): NCT02718820

Layout table for location information
Medical University of Vienna
Vienna, Austria, 1090
Sponsors and Collaborators
Medical University of Vienna
Layout table for investigator information
Principal Investigator: Thorsten Fuereder, MD Medical University of Vienna
Layout table for additonal information
Responsible Party: Thorsten Fuereder, Assoc.Prof.PD.Dr., Medical University of Vienna
ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT02718820    
Other Study ID Numbers: PemDoc II
First Posted: March 24, 2016    Key Record Dates
Last Update Posted: June 18, 2021
Last Verified: June 2021
Individual Participant Data (IPD) Sharing Statement:
Plan to Share IPD: Undecided
Additional relevant MeSH terms:
Layout table for MeSH terms
Neoplasms, Glandular and Epithelial
Neoplasms by Histologic Type
Antineoplastic Agents
Tubulin Modulators
Antimitotic Agents
Mitosis Modulators
Molecular Mechanisms of Pharmacological Action
Antineoplastic Agents, Immunological
Immune Checkpoint Inhibitors