Investigational New Drugs

, Volume 19, Issue 4, pp 311–315 | Cite as

Evaluation of Gemcitabine in Patients with Recurrent or Metastatic Squamous Cell Carcinoma of the Head and Neck: A Southwest Oncology Group Phase II Study

  • Wolfram E. Samlowski
  • Holly Gundacker
  • J. Philip Kuebler
  • Jeffrey K. Giguere
  • Glenn M. Mills
  • David E. Schuller
  • John F. Ensley


A phase II trial of gemcitabine(Gemzar®), a nucleoside analogue with broadactivity in solid tumors, was performed inpatients with recurrent or metastaticsquamous cell carcinoma of the head andneck. A total of 26 eligible patients wereregistered to receive a dose of1250 mg/m2 weekly for 3 weeks,followed by a 1 week rest. Toxicity wasevaluable in 26 patients. Nausea andvomiting occured in 11 and 6 patients,repectively. Grade 3 or 4 hematologictoxicities were infrequent. Two patientsdeveloped neutropenic infections. Onepatient developed fatal liver failure whichwas thought due to progressive livermetastases or infection 14 days after asingle dose of gemcitabine. There were noobjective treatment responses (95% CI0–13%), with a median survival of 6 monthsin this highly resistant diseasepopulation. Gemcitabine is not consideredactive enough as monotherapy for furtherevaluation in this disease population.

gemcitabine squamous cell carcinoma phase II trial 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  • Wolfram E. Samlowski
    • 1
  • Holly Gundacker
    • 2
  • J. Philip Kuebler
    • 3
  • Jeffrey K. Giguere
    • 4
  • Glenn M. Mills
    • 5
  • David E. Schuller
    • 6
  • John F. Ensley
    • 7
  1. 1.Huntsman Cancer InstituteUniversity of UtahSalt Lake CityU.S.A.
  2. 2.Southwest Oncology Group Statistical CenterSeattleU.S.A.
  3. 3.Columbus CCOPColumbusU.S.A.
  4. 4.Greenville CCOPGreenvilleU.S.A.
  5. 5.Louisiana State University Medical CenterShreveportU.S.A.
  6. 6.Ohio State University Health CenterColumbusU.S.A.
  7. 7.Wayne State University Medical CenterDetroitU.S.A.

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