Phase II study of conformal hypofractionated radiotherapy with concurrent gemcitabine in muscle-invasive bladder cancer.
Choudhury A., Swindell R., Logue JP., Elliott PA., Livsey JE., Wise M., Symonds P., Wylie JP., Ramani V., Sangar V., Lyons J., Bottomley I., McCaul D., Clarke NW., Kiltie AE., Cowan RA.
PURPOSE: The aim of this prospective, phase II trial was to determine the response of muscle-invasive bladder cancer (MIBC) to concurrent chemoradiotherapy of weekly gemcitabine with 4 weeks of radiotherapy (RT; GemX). PATIENTS AND METHODS: Fifty patients with transitional cell carcinoma, stage T2-3, N0, M0 after transurethral resection and magnetic resonance imaging, were recruited. Gemcitabine was given intravenously at 100 mg/m(2) on days 1, 8, 15, and 22 of a 28-day RT schedule that delivered 52.5 Gy in 20 fractions. Chemotherapy was stopped for Radiation Therapy Oncology Group (RTOG) grade 3 bladder or bowel toxicity. The primary end points were tumor response, toxicity, and survival. RESULTS: All patients completed RT; 46 tolerated all four cycles of gemcitabine. Two patients stopped after two cycles, and two stopped after three cycles, because of bowel toxicity. Forty-seven patients had a post-treatment cystoscopy; 44 (88%) achieved a complete endoscopic response. At a median follow-up of 36 months (range, 15 to 62 months), 36 patients were alive, and 32 of these had a functional and intact bladder. Fourteen patients died; seven died as a result of metastatic MIBC, five died as a result of intercurrent disease, and two died as a result of treatment-associated deaths. Four patients underwent cystectomy; three because of recurrent disease and one because of toxicity. One patient required a bowel resection for late toxicity. By using Kaplan-Meier analyses, 3-year cancer-specific survival was 82%, and overall survival was 75%. CONCLUSION: Concurrent gemcitabine-based chemoradiotherapy (ie, GemX) produces a high response rate in MIBC and has durable local control and acceptable toxicity, which allows patients to preserve their own bladder. This treatment modality warrants additional investigation in a phase III setting.