Original Article

Cancer Chemotherapy and Pharmacology

, Volume 65, Issue 1, pp 67-71

First online:

Safety and pharmacokinetic trial of docetaxel plus an Astragalus-based herbal formula for non-small cell lung cancer patients

  • Barrie R. CassilethAffiliated withIntegrative Medicine Service, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center Email author 
  • , Naiyer RizviAffiliated withThoracic Oncology Service, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center
  • , Gary DengAffiliated withIntegrative Medicine Service, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center
  • , K. Simon YeungAffiliated withIntegrative Medicine Service, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center
  • , Andrew VickersAffiliated withIntegrative Medicine Service, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer CenterBiostatistics, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center
  • , Stacey GuillenAffiliated withIntegrative Medicine Service, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center
  • , Derek WooAffiliated withIntegrative Medicine Service, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center
  • , Marci ColetonAffiliated withIntegrative Medicine Service, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center
  • , Mark G. KrisAffiliated withThoracic Oncology Service, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center

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Abstract

Purpose

To study a commonly used Astragalus-based herbal formula previously found effective in non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) on the pharmacokinetics of docetaxel in patients with NSCLC.

Methods

Patients with advanced NSCLC who progressed after prior platinum-containing chemotherapy were accrued and received docetaxel at 35 mg/m2 for 3 weeks followed by 1 week of rest. At 4 days prior to the second dosing, Jinfukang was given orally. Pharmacokinetic studies of initial-dose docetaxel (in the absence of Jinfukang) and the third dose (in the presence of Jinfukang) were compared.

Results

Of the 24 patients enrolled, 21 started Jinfukang and docetaxel. Jinfukang had no significant impact on the pharmacokinetics of docetaxel. Median time to progression or withdrawal from treatment was 7 weeks. Twelve patients were removed from study for progression of disease; nine patients withdrew.

Conclusions

Jinfukang did not alter the pharmacokinetics of docetaxel nor appear to affect survival in this study.

Keywords

Lung cancer Chemotherapy Docetaxel Botanicals Astragalus