Breast Cancer

, Volume 24, Issue 2, pp 171–179

Systematic review of ixabepilone for treating metastatic breast cancer

Review Article

DOI: 10.1007/s12282-016-0717-0

Cite this article as:
Li, J., Ren, J. & Sun, W. Breast Cancer (2017) 24: 171. doi:10.1007/s12282-016-0717-0



Ixabepilone is now a Food and Drug Administration-approved therapeutic option for patients with metastatic breast cancer (MBC) whose disease has progressed despite prior anthracycline and taxane therapy. We conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis to systematically evaluate the efficacy and safety of ixabepilone for treating metastatic breast cancer.


A systematic review and meta-analysis were conducted. Randomized controlled studies applying ixabepilone for treating MBC were included. The primary outcome was Overall Survival (OS). The authors of primary articles were contacted and methodological quality was evaluated. Subgroups were drawn based on intervention measures; heterogeneity and bias were discussed.


Eight studies with 5247 patients were included. Compared with a weekly schedule, a triweekly schedule of ixabepilone was better at improving overall response rate (ORR), while there were no differences in improving OS and progression-free survival (PFS). Ixabepilone plus capecitabine was superior to capecitabine monotherapy in improving OS, PFS and ORR. Paclitaxel was more effective than ixabepilone in terms of OS and PFS. There was no difference in the improvement of ORR, clinical benefit rate (CBR) and disease control rate (DCR) between ixabepilone and eribulin.


Current evidence suggests that a triweekly schedule of ixabepilone is more effective than weekly dosing in improving ORR. Use of ixabepilone in combination with capecitabine possesses superior clinical efficacy to the use of capecitabine alone. Paclitaxel was more effective than ixabepilone in terms of OS and PFS. The efficacy and safety between ixabepilone and eribulin were identical.


Metastatic breast cancer Therapy Systematic review Meta-analysis Ixabepilone 

Copyright information

© The Japanese Breast Cancer Society 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.College of Pharmacy, Southwest University for NationalitiesChengduPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.Sichuan Industrial Institute of Antibiotics of Chengdu UniversityChengduPeople’s Republic of China

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