, Volume 59, Issue 3, pp 295-300
Date: 17 Jun 2006

Irofulven as first line therapy in recurrent or metastatic gastric cancer: a phase II multicenter study by the Cancer Therapeutics Research Group (CTRG)

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The purpose of this study was to evaluate the tolerability and efficacy of irofulven, a DNA interacting acylfulvene analog, as first line therapy for patients with recurrent or metastatic gastric cancer.

Patients and methods

Twenty-three patients with recurrent or metastatic gastric cancer received irofulven at a dose of 0.45 mg/kg administered intravenously over 30-min infusion (up to a maximum of 50 mg), on days 1 and 8, every 3 weeks.


The median number of cycles delivered per patient was 2 (range 1–6). Two patients (9%) had ≥ 1-week delay in administration of subsequent cycle of chemotherapy. For the day 8 chemotherapy, dose reductions were required in seven patients (30%); dose omitting occurred in five patients (22%). Grade 3/4 anemia and neutropenia occurred in 22 and 17% of patients, respectively. There was no grade 4 thrombocytopenia and no neutropenic fever was observed. Of the 20 evaluable patients, there were no responses observed, 3 patients had stable disease after 2 cycles of treatment which was not confirmed by a further assessment. Median overall survival was 6.05 months (95% CI 4.55–9.39).


Irofulven was tolerated at the dose of 0.45 mg/kg on days 1 and 8, every 3 weeks but showed no evidence of antitumor activity in patients with advanced gastric cancer.